Three Found Guilty in Human Smuggling Operation

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

DEL RIO – This week, a federal jury sitting in Del Rio convicted three defendants of one count of conspiracy to transport illegal aliens and one count of conspiracy to harbor illegal aliens, both in violation of Title 8, United States Code, Section 1324, as well as one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Roberto Galeas-Mejia, 45, from Honduras who resided in San Antonio; Eva Maria Galeas, aka Eva Huerta-Galeas, 42, of San Antonio; and Lisa Maria Ortega, 24, of San Antonio, conspired together to run a human alien smuggling operation (ASO) and to launder the monetary proceeds of their unlawful activities.  Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agents linked at least 28 events of transporting and harboring undocumented non-citizens to this ASO and arrested over 200 non-citizens who were smuggled by the ASO.  In addition, HSI seized $603,593 in ASO proceeds from the residence of Roberto Galeas-Mejia.  All are scheduled for sentencing on January 25, 2023.

Co-defendants Sandra Galeas-Mejia, 46, of San Antonio and Norma Galeas-Mejia, 50, of Houston, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to transport illegal aliens in violation of Title 8, United States Code, Section 1324.  Sandra Galeas is scheduled for sentencing on August 30, 2022.  Norma Galeas is scheduled for sentencing on September 28, 2022. 

U.S. Attorney Ashley C. Hoff of the Western District of Texas and HSI Acting Special Agent in Charge Craig Larrabee made the announcement.

HSI is investigating the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rex Beasley, Antonio Franco and Holly Pavlinski are prosecuting the case.

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