by Will Racke
A Guatemalan national who allegedly raped a teenage girl had been deported twice before his latest arrest in Oregon, federal officials said Monday.
Anastacio Eugenio Lopez Fabian, 24, was arrested in Seaside, Ore., on Feb. 14, after investigators determined he had sex several times with a girl younger than 14, reported The Daily Astorian. That same day, he was released after posting $250,000 bail.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested Lopez Fabian on March 7 while he was on his way to a court hearing. He is now in immigration detention at the private Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Wash., according to ICE.
ICE confirmed on Monday that Lopez Fabian has been deported on two previous occasions — first in 2013 and again in 2014. ICE spokeswoman Carissa Cutrell criticized the Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office for not alerting immigration authorities when Lopez Fabian was arrested in February.
“Hours after his release, ICE deportation officers received information from federal databases about his prior immigration history and his most recent arrest,” Cutrell told The Daily Astorian. “From there, they conducted an online review of jail and court records and determined that Lopez-Fabian did not have lawful status in the country, and subsequently, targeted him for immigration enforcement.”
Under a longstanding Oregon law, local law enforcement agencies are prohibited from enforcing civil immigration violations without a warrant signed by a federal judge or magistrate. Most of Oregon’s police departments also interpret that law to mean they cannot agree to requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to hold criminal aliens in local jails beyond their release dates.
Clatsop County Sheriff Tom Bergin says his office had no choice but to release Lopez Fabian because he posted bail before ICE could be notified.
“He posted bail, so there’s not much we can do unless ICE notifies us, which it didn’t,” Bergin said. “ICE puts out a blanket statement every time they do these things because they want to cover their butts. Believe me, we want to hold these guys.”
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