Smuggler Sentenced For Shipping Illegal Immigrants And Ramming US Coast Guard Vessel

Jesus Jeovanny Alcaraz-Valdez, the boat captain who reportedly rammed a vessel of the U.S. Coast Guard off Southern California after smuggling a dozen individuals into the nation, was sentenced to five years in federal prison on Wednesday.

Alcaraz was sentenced for the 2022 (December) incident in San Diego by a judge who ruled that his actions were reckless and troubling, the U.S. attorney’s office reported in a statement.

According to the prosecutors, Alcaraz had piloted a panga vessel — a small, fishing-type boat often used by human smugglers — to bring approximately 12 individuals into the U.S. from Mexico unlawfully.


According to the authorities, the immigrants from Guatemala and Mexico paid up to $24,000 per head for the trip. The boat took them close to the coast off the San Diego seaside suburb of the resort city, Coronado, before dawn, where Alcaraz asked them to take their life jackets off and enter the waist-deep surf even though some did not know how to swim, the U.S. attorney’s office informed.

Eight individuals had been taken into custody by the U.S. Border Patrol. Four others managed to escape. The boat was then seen to be sailing back out to sea toward Mexico. As a Coast Guard vessel attempted to stop it, authorities reported that Alcaraz rammed the boat twice, badly shattering a window and causing minor neck and back injuries to all four aboard.

Alcaraz was arrested after the Coast Guard’s gunshots turned off the vessel’s engine. He also pleaded guilty to human smuggling and assault in March. Maritime smuggling is highly dangerous and puts the lives of passengers and the law enforcement officers responsible for safeguarding borders at incredible risk, Randy Grossman, a U.S. Attorney, said in a statement.

Reference: Toronto City News, Hoodline

Latest Shipping News You Would Like:

Get the Latest Maritime News Delivered to Your Inbox!

Our free, fast, and fun newsletter on the global maritime industry, delivered everyday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *