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United States v. Nunez-Flores

July 21, 2006

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
v.
ROMEO NUNEZ-FLORES, HEIBERTO ALVARADO-MARTINEZ DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Ambrose, Chief District Judge

FINDINGS OF FACT CONCLUSIONS OF LAW and ORDER OF COURT

I. FINDINGS OF FACT

1. On March 24, 2006, at 12:30 A.M., Ohio Township Police Officer Donald Manz stopped a Chevrolet Cavalier in Neville Township because the vehicle was traveling forty-six (46) miles per hour in a twenty-five (25) mile an hour zone.

2. Manz's stop of the vehicle was made using VASCAR equipment, in which the officer had received training.

3. Manz observed three (3) occupants in the vehicle, Defendant Nunez-Flores and Defendant Alvardo-Martinez and the driver Cruz-Rosas.

4. The driver of the vehicle was asked for license and registration information. He produced registration indicating that a woman in North Carolina owned the car. He also produced a North Carolina identification card. He had no driver's license. He also stated, in response to a question by Manz, that neither Defendant had a driver's license. The North Carolina identification card was found to be invalid.

5. Manz then requested identification from both Defendants, who were passengers in the vehicle. Defendant Alvardo-Martinez produced a Resident Alien Card which appeared "suspicious" to Manz. Defendant Nunez-Flores produced identification cards from the Republic of El Salvador. Manz testified that the cards produced by Defendants were not official looking and poorly laminated. Manz checked the names and dates of birth provided by Defendants and found no records.

6. Manz asked both Defendants and the driver if they were in this country illegally. The driver nodded affirmatively and Defendants did not respond, but lowered their heads.

7. Defendants are Hispanic and contend that they neither speak nor understand the English language.

8. Manz notified Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE") who directed him to take Defendants and the driver to the county jail. Manz returned all the identifications to Defendants.

9. ICE Agents interviewed both Defendants on March 24, 2006.

10. ICE Agents collected from Defendants the identification cards Defendants had presented to Manz after the traffic stop.

11. The ICE Agents asked both Defendants for their wallets. Both contained a Resident Alien Card which ...


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