U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement press release...
PORTLAND, OR - On Tuesday, April 28, an Oregon State Police (OSP) trooper conducted a traffic stop on a Ford F-150 pickup, for multiple traffic violations, on Interstate 5 northbound near milepost 39, according to an OSP press release.
The release states that the trooper observed signs of potential criminal behavior and a search of the vehicle was conducted. During the search the trooper located 19.7 pounds of methamphetamine and $16,660 cash.
The driver of the vehicle was Leonel Campos-Valdez, 25, and the passenger was Francisco Vazquez-Cruz, 24.
Leonel Campos-Valdez and Francisco Vasquez-Cruz are both citizens of Mexico and in the United States illegally. Both men were charged with unlawful delivery of methamphetamine, laundering a monetary instrument and unlawful possession of methamphetamine and booked into the Jackson County Jail in Medford, Oregon.
On April 29, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE), Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) lodged immigration detainers on Campos-Valdez and Vasquez-Cruz with the jail. The Jackson County Jail did not honor the detainers and released both illegal aliens back into the community the same day.
“When criminals who should have been turned over to ICE are instead released into the public, it is a great injustice to the people in which law enforcement is sworn to protect,” said Michael Melendez, acting field office director for ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations – Seattle. “As law enforcement officers we have an obligation to protect those in our community, and that includes using every resources within our power, such as immigration detainers, to keep criminals who endanger the public, like these two, off our streets.”
Immigration records reveal that the U.S. Border Patrol previously removed Vasquez-Cruz from the U.S. to Mexico on Jan. 30, 2016, via the Calexico, California port of entry.
Immigration records reveal that on Feb. 21, 2014, the U.S. Border Patrol arrested Campos-Valdez near Why, Arizona. On Feb. 24, 2014, Campos-Valdez was convicted of illegal entry into the U.S. and sentenced to time served. He was issued an expedited removal order and removed to Mexico near the San Luis, Arizona port of entry the same day. Campos-Valdez illegally reentered the U.S. on an unknown date and location.
*The sheriff of Jackson County is Nathan Stickler, and he could have honored the ICE detainer. Instead, he chose to release two meth dealers back onto our streets. Perhaps, Sheriff Stickler should ask himself why he chose law enforcement as a career.