Toledo, Ohio. -The U.S. Border Patrol's Detroit Sector and United States Attorney's Office in Toledo, Ohio, today announced that Antonio Cervantes-Peralta, an illegal alien from Mexico, was found guilty by a jury in U.S. District Court on the felony charge of transportation on an illegal alien.
On April 25, 2010 at approximately 7:00 p.m., Border Patrol agents from the Sandusky Bay Border Patrol Station were traveling west on the Ohio Turnpike when a Dodge Caravan with Arizona plates exhibited "road rage" characteristics with a third party vehicle within a posted construction zone. The Caravan crossed the center line forcing the Border Patrol agent to take evasive action and avoid a collision.
After exiting the construction zone, agents initiated a vehicle stop. As agents approached the vehicle the Caravan accelerated and sped off westbound on I-80, Ohio State Troopers were notified. Agents attempted to pursue the vehicle but were unable to safely catch-up in traffic and terminated their pursuit.
At approximately 7:45 p.m. Ohio State Troopers made contact with the van near mile marker 43. The two men attempted to elude police, losing control and rolling the vehicle over at an off-ramp. One of the men fled the vehicle and troopers initiated a foot pursuit. The individual was later caught by Fulton County Sheriff's deputies and both men were taken to the Fulton County Medical Center where they received treatment for minor injuries and were released.
Corey Bammer, Patrol Agent in Charge of the Sandusky Bay Station said, "Supervisory Assistant U.S. Attorney David Bauer did an outstanding job preparing and presenting this case to the jury, and I am pleased the jury was able to take the facts and deliver a guilty verdict. It will take a group effort to stop illegal human smuggling and drug trafficking in our area, but this verdict clearly shows Northern Ohio residents are serious about this issue."
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Toledo, OH filed felony prosecution charges against Antonio Cervantes-Peralta in May. Sentencing for Cervantes-Peralta is scheduled for February 7, 2011 in U.S. District Court. He faces up to 20 years in jail and up to a $250,000 fine. Cervantes-Peralta is in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service until sentencing.
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.