Immigration violation leads to plea

ALBANY — A Boston man has been sentenced to time served in federal prison following his guilty plea to a violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Willy Rodriguez, 32, originally from the Dominican Republic, was found to have illegally re-entered the United States when he was located in Amsterdam.

Rodriguez was sentenced Wednesday to a term of “time served,” 7 and a half months, in prison by Senior United States District Court Judge Frederick J. Scullin.

According to United States Attorney Richard S. Hartunian and Michael T. Phillips, Field Office Director, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Enforcement Removal Operations (ICE/ERO), Buffalo Field Office, Rodriguez will now be subject for removal proceedings from the United States.

According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney and ICE, in December 2016, Rodriguez pleaded guilty to a violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which prohibits previously removed aliens from entering, attempting to enter, or being found in the United States without prior application and consent of the Department of Homeland Security.

Rodriguez was prosecuted after he was encountered in Amsterdam by city police and ICE officers on Aug. 23, 2016.

ICE determined that Rodriguez was an alien unlawfully present in the United States and arrested him. A check of Rodriguez’s fingerprints by ICE indicated that he had been deported and removed from the United States to the Dominican Republic in 2011.

Rodriguez was deported to his native Dominican Republic in 2011 after he was convicted in Providence, Rhode Island of a drug trafficking offense.

The case was investigated by the United States Department of Homeland Security, ICE Enforcement & Removal Operations (ERO), with the assistance of the Amsterdam Police Department, and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward P. Grogan.

By Patricia Older

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