Officers with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) on Tuesday removed a Peruvian citizen wanted in Peru in connection with the 1991 “Santa Barbara Massacre.”
Dennis Wilfredo Pacheco-Zambrano, 48, a former Peruvian army second sergeant, has been charged in Peru for his alleged role in the July 4, 1991, torture, rape and extrajudicial killing of 15 Peruvian civilians in the rural village of Santa Barbara, Peru. The killings were part of a larger campaign of military violence against the civilian population in the region that took place between 1980 and 2000.
“This case demonstrates that decades-old alleged murders of innocent civilians will not be forgotten,” said Robert Guadian, acting field office director of ERO Dallas. “The United States will not tolerate anyone who tries to use this country as a safe haven for their crimes.”
Special agents with ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) arrested Pacheco-Zambrano on Sept. 17, 2018, at his residence in San Angelo, Texas. On Oct. 3, an immigration judge ordered that Pacheco-Zambrano be removed from the United States. This case was litigated by ICE’s Dallas Office of the Chief Counsel with the support of the ICE Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center (HRVWCC). U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in Lima, Peru, assisted with this case.
Since 2003, the HRVWCC has issued more than 75,000 subject records for individuals from more than 110 countries and stopped more than 260 suspected human rights violators and war criminals from entering the U.S. It has supported ICE’s removal of 908 known or suspected human rights violators from the U.S. and has facilitated the departure of an additional 122 such individuals. The HRVWCC’s support of the field has led to the arrest of more than 410 individuals for human rights-related violations of the law under various criminal and immigration statutes. It is currently supporting more than 135 criminal investigations into suspected human rights violators and is pursuing more than 1,750 leads and removal cases involving suspected human rights violators from 95 different countries.