DERBY LINE, Vt. - On Jan. 7, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) arrived at the Derby Line port of entry with Valentina Velasquez, a United States Citizen and subject of a Canadian Removal Order due to criminal activity in the province of Quebec. Ms. Velasquez is the suspect in an attempted armed robbery in Derby Line and fled the country and illegally entered Canada without inspection on Sept. 26, 2014.
Before Ms. Velasquez entered Canada and failed to present herself to a CBSA office, she had attempted to rob the Derby Village Market with a rifle, and was part of a high-speed chase on Rt 5, through the Derby village.
The pursuit ended in Stansted, Canada, where the subject lost control of her vehicle. Ms. Velasquez was subsequently apprehended by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Surete Quebec.
On Oct. 9, 2014, at the courthouse of Sherbrooke, Qc, Ms. Velasquez pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 135 days of prison for offenses under the Criminal Code of Canada and under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. On Jan. 7, after serving her sentence in Canada, Ms. Velasquez was turned over to U.S. authorities by the CBSA.
Law enforcement databases indicated 31-year-old Velasquez had a lengthy criminal record and was the subject of two active arrest warrants out of Orleans County, Vt. In coordination with Homeland Security Investigations, CBP officers turned Ms. Velasquez over to the Vermont State Police for further investigation and prosecution.
“Active collaboration with our federal, state and international law enforcement partners led to the return of an alleged criminal to face justice in Vermont,” said Kevin W. Weeks, director of Field Operations in Boston. “Protecting public safety is a responsibility that falls on both sides of the international boundary, and CBP is proud to work side by side with our Canadian counterparts, taking dangerous people off the street.”
The charges and allegations contained in criminal complaints are merely accusations, and defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
To keep our borders secure, CBP inspects everyone who arrives at U.S. ports of entry. For more on CBP’s border security mission at our nation’s ports of entry, please visit the Border Security section of the CBP website.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.