The immigration and criminal histories of Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian, who was arrested November 17 and charged with rape and aggravated sexual battery after he allegedly struck the vehicle of a woman with his car, dragged the driver into a ditch and raped her for two hours near Fredericksburg, Va. in October, have been requested by House and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairmen Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).
According to Goodlatte and Grassley, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement reportedly issued an immigration detainer for Sibrian which sought cooperation with local authorities to prevent Sibrian from being released back into the public.
In their letter to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson, Grassley and Goodlatte requested Sibrian’s full immigration and criminal background, including when and how he entered the United States, whether he has been previously deported and whether he applied for or received any immigration benefits.
Goodlatte and Grassley also demanded details on Sibrian’s previous encounters with law enforcement and immigration authorities, arrest history and any gang affiliations. They also asked whether Sibrian would have been considered an enforcement priority under the Obama administration’s Priority Enforcement Program prior to the rape charges, what steps federal officials will take if local law enforcement refuses to honor the federal detainer and whether federal officials have contacted the victims of the alleged crimes committed by Sibrian.
Both Goodlatte and Grassley in recent months jointly and individually have demanded details for information on criminal acts by illegal aliens who were never deported despite their repeated criminal acts in the US after repeatedly being deported, as Homeland Security Today has reported.
The two lawmakers, for example, recently questioned why criminal gang member, Thong Vang, who shot and critically injured two correctional officers on September 3, wasn’t deported from the US more than two years ago after serving 16 years in prison for raping three girls under the age of 14, but instead was released because his native country of Laos refused to accept him.
In a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Johnson, Goodlatte and Grassley asked why more pressure was not put on Laos to accept the return of its own citizens.
“This is yet another outrageous example of this administration’s refusal to enforce our immigration laws and the tragic consequences that result … If a country will not accept the return of its citizens, it should not be rewarded with visas to allow its citizens to enter the United States,” Goodlatte and Grassley said in their letter.
Goodlatte has repeatedly asked Johnson to explain the administration’s lax enforcement of the immigration laws that allow criminal aliens to victimize Americans. According to Goodlatte, DHS has been unresponsive to the committee’s numerous requests in recent months.
Goodlatte told Homeland Security Today, "President Obama’s lax enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws even for the most violent criminals has needlessly endangered American communities.”
He stressed that, “The House Judiciary Committee has conscientiously exercised its oversight authority over these policies and their impact on public safety, including instances when hardened criminal aliens commit crimes against Americans. While this oversight should be a nonpartisan, commonsense effort to root out problems and provide effective solutions to misguided policies that enable criminals to continue to victimize innocent Americans, sadly the Obama administration has often stonewalled or significantly delayed answering the committee’s requests for information. The next administration, whether Republican or Democratic, must comply with the committee’s requests in a timely manner and be transparent with Congress and the American people."
In other recent requests to Johnson, Goodlatte wrote, “Tomas Martinez-Maldonado, an unlawful, criminal alien from Mexico, was arrested and charged with raping a 12-year-old girl on a bus in Kansas. Federal officials have stated that Martinez-Maldonado has been removed from the United States ten times since 2010 and has a felony conviction for illegal reentry after removal. Edis Moya Alas, an unlawful immigrant from El Salvador, was arrested … and charged with kidnapping a 6-year-old girl from her home in Fort Worth, Texas and raping her. Alas was reportedly arrested in Fort Worth on drug charges approximately two years ago yet was not placed in removal proceedings.”
In his letter to Johnson, Goodlatte called on the DHS secretary to provide information about Martinez-Maldonado and Alas’ immigration and criminal histories so that the committee is able to determine whether DHS took all reasonable and appropriate actions within its immigration enforcement authority to ensure the safety and protection of Americans.
In recent months, as Homeland Security Today has reported, Goodlatte has raised the following issues with DHS:
- In September, sought information from DHS on a convicted child rapist who shot two officers who should have been deported years ago.
- Demanded Secretary Johnson provide information about Nelash Mohamed Das, a citizen of Bangladesh and a lawful permanent resident of the United States arrested by the FBI and charged with attempting to provide material support to a terrorist organization by conspiring to murder a US military member in Prince George’s County, Maryland on behalf of ISIS.
- Asked the DHS secretary and Secretary of State John Kerry why criminal gang member, Thong Vang, who shot and critically injured two correctional officers on September 3, wasn’t deported from the US more than two years ago after serving 16 years in prison for raping three girls under the age of 14, and instead was released because his native country of Laos refused to accept him.
In the latest request for information on Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian, the two lawamkers told Johnson that, “To better understand Sibrian’s immigration and criminal history, please provide both Committees on the Judiciary with the following information as soon as possible, but not later than December 5, 2016:
- The alien registration number for Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian, his complete alien file (A-file), including any temporary files or working files, and all documents and items contained in them that were generated by the DHS or in its possession about him, whether currently in written or electronic form, including, but not limited to, the Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Executive Summary, criminal history and immigration summaries, detainers or requests for notification, I-213(s) and Notice(s) to Appear or other charging documents created to seek his removal from the United States.How and when did Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian enter the United States?
- Had Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian ever been removed previously? If so, when?
- If a law enforcement agency declines to honor a detainer or notify ICE regarding Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian, what action will DHS take to ensure that he is not released from custody and allowed to reoffend?
- Please identify each and every date on which Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian was arrested by a law enforcement agency in the United States, including criminal and civil arrests, the nature of the charges, the jurisdictions where the arrests occurred, the dispositions of the charges, the dates on which he was released from the custody of the law enforcement agencies, and the reasons for the release.
- Did Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian ever apply for any immigration benefit? If so, was any application approved? Please provide copies of any applications that Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian may have submitted, whether or not adjudicated.Was Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian a member of, or associated with any criminal gang? Please explain.
- If Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian had been encountered by DHS enforcement officials prior to his recent arrest for rape, would he have met the requirements to be considered a priority for removal under the Administration’s Priority Enforcement Program? If so, please provide the exact reason for such consideration. If not, why not?
- Has any victim(s) associated with the alleged crime(s) committed by Roberto Carlos Flores Sibrian been contacted by officials at ICE? Please provide details.
"As you know," the lawmakers told Johnson, " the Privacy Act authorizes disclosure of information to Committees of Congress. Upon receipt of this letter, if you cannot fully respond to each and every request for documents or information set forth above, please immediately contact the staff members of the respective Committees below and identify the specific item requested to which you cannot fully respond and explain why you cannot respond."