Human Smuggler Indicted as Part of U.S.- Brazilian Takedown

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has announced the conclusion of a significant law enforcement operation in Brazil that has led to U.S. indictments for criminal human smuggling. The targeted smugglers are alleged to have smuggled individuals from South Asia and elsewhere into Brazil and ultimately to the U.S.

Saifullah Al-Mamun was arrested in Brazil.  Al-Mamun is charged in a superseding indictment unsealed today in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas – Laredo Division, charging him with eight conspiracy and alien smuggling counts. Seven other Brazilians were arrested in Brazil for similar charges.

The DOJ release credits these arrests to “extensive coordination and cooperation efforts between United States and Brazilian law enforcement authorities culminat[ing] in the Brazil Federal Police (DPF) conducting a significant enforcement operation to disrupt and dismantle a transnational alien smuggling organization.”

The coordination was led by the Extraterritorial Criminal Travel Strike Force (ECT) program, a joint partnership between the Justice Department Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section (HRSP) and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

“Transnational human smuggling organizations threaten the security of the United States,” said Special Agent in Charge Scott Brown of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Phoenix.  “Through a significant joint effort with our domestic and international law enforcement partners, these arrests signify another victory as we continue to investigate and dismantle those who conspire to undermine our nation’s immigration laws for their own profit.”

According to the indictment, Al-Mamun is alleged to have housed individuals in São Paulo, Brazil and arranged for their travel through a network of smugglers operating out of Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, and Mexico to the United States. In return for smuggling the people into the United States, Al-Mamun and his two co-conspirators are alleged to have arranged to be paid in Mexico, Central America, South America, Bangladesh, and elsewhere.

Last month, HSI efforts also led to the arrest of Bangladeshi nationals on similar smuggling charges.

Posted in The Takedown

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