US flag Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Archived Content

In an effort to keep current, the archive contains content from a previous administration or is otherwise outdated.

Alexis Candelario Arrested on Armed Career Criminal Charges

Release Date: 
December 16, 2009

San Juan, P.R. - On November 10, a sealed complaint against Alexis Candelario Santana was authorized by U.S. Magistrate Judge Justo Arenas charging federal firearms violations under Title 18, United States Code, Sections 922(g)(1) and (924)(e). Last night Candelario Santana was arrested by Customs and Border Protection agents in Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. The announcement of the arrest was made today by Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico, along with federal and state law enforcement agents.

Candelario Santana is the alleged mastermind of the massacre which occurred on October 17, 2009, in the business establishment known as "La Tómbola" in Toa Baja, Puerto Rico, where eight people were killed and 20 injured.

"The arrest of Candelario Santana is the result of the joint efforts of a task force of federal and state prosecutors and law enforcement agents who worked tirelessly to locate and capture him. We will continue working with our state and federal law enforcement partners to conclude the ongoing investigation into the events of October 17," said U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodriguez-Vélez.

This arrest was part of the joint efforts of the FBI, DEA, Puerto Rico Police Department, ATF, ICE, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Puerto Rico Department of Justice.

"Thanks to our continuous collaboration with federal, state and local partners we are able to protect the U.S. borders from criminals, while facilitating legal trade and travel". Miguel Isaac, director of Marine Operations for CBP. Penalties for the firearms offenses alleged in the complaint range from 15 years to life imprisonment, and fines up to $250,000.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jose A. Contreras, of the Violent Crimes Unit. The investigation into Candelario Santana's criminal activities is ongoing.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017