Crime

Fugitive from Argentina arrested in Miami Beach

achardy@miamiherald.com

An Argentine man wanted for murder in his home country was arrested Thursday night in Miami Beach by officers of enforcement and removal operations, a unit of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) assigned to find fugitives, ICE said in a statement Friday.

Gabriel Hernan Garcia Rodriguez, 36, was indicted in Argentina on Nov. 6, 1999, for his alleged role in a homicide in Buenos Aires.

On Aug. 9, 2011, an Interpol Red Notice was issued requesting information on his whereabouts in any country, the ICE statement said.

ERO officers encountered Garcia Rodriguez on April 19, 2013, following his arrest in Miami-Dade on numerous criminal charges.

Garcia Rodriguez was convicted of battery Sept. 12, 2014, and sentenced to time served. Due to Miami-Dade’s policy of not honoring ICE detainers, Garcia Rodriguez was released before immigration authorities could get to him, the ICE statement said.

ICE employed the help of a fugitive operations tracking team, or FUGOPS, in finding Garcia Rodriguez. He was arrested without incident one week after his release by Miami-Dade.

Garcia Rodriguez will remain in ERO custody pending his removal to Argentina, where he will be turned over to authorities there to face murder charges, the ICE statement said.

In December 2013, Miami-Dade County modified its policies, under pressure by immigrant rights activists, and decided to no longer automatically comply with ICE detainers since the county attorney had determined previously that these documents were merely requests, not mandates.

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