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Blanca Diaz pleads guilty to entering U.S. illegally

Woman sentenced to 3 months served, turned over to immigration officials

Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 12:36 PM
Last updated Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012 4:16 AM
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Blanca Diaz pleaded guilty Wednesday to entering the United States illegally and was sentenced to the three months she has served in jail since her arrest in November.

Blanca Diaz

U.S. District Judge Randal Hall ordered Diaz to be immediately turned over to immigration officials with a recommendation for deportation to her native Mexico.

Diaz and her husband, Hugo Diaz, were indicted on federal charges of harboring illegal immigrants, money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering in connection with the money they made using illegal immigrants as workers for their Evans-based construction businesses.

Hugo Diaz pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of harboring an illegal immigrant and will remain in federal custody until sentencing at a future date. He also faces deportation to Mexico.

Blanca Diaz did not plead guilty to any of the five counts against her on the indictment, but pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor information accusing her of entering the country illegally. That reduced her maximum sentence from 50 years to six months in prison. The indictment will remain open until the seven others who are listed resolve their charges of illegally entering the country.

Hall eventually accepted the plea bargain Wednesday but asked Assistant U.S. Attorney David Stewart to help him with some “questions and reservations.”

“I consider illegal entry very serious,” Hall said.

Stewart said Blanca Diaz shared the business bank accounts with her husband but did not play as large a role in the conspiracy as he did. Stewart added that the Diaz couple are also losing most of their property, including a $1.7 million home and several vehicles, to forfeiture.

“We went aggressively after as many assets as we could,” Stewart said.

Blanca Diaz said through her attorney, Carl Lietz, that she loved the United States and felt safe. But she’s ready to return to Mexico after nine years and has no plans to come back, Lietz said.

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lsmith 02/15/12 - 01:20 pm
Hmmm, going to turn her over

Hmmm, going to turn her over to Obama administration immigration officials. That means released, back on the streets and in business again.

copperhead 02/15/12 - 02:35 pm
No wonder undocumented aliens

No wonder undocumented aliens come here! Come here,break our laws,make millions on enslaving other undocumented aliens,and be sent home with your millions. Ain't it great?!?

Cynical old woman
Cynical old woman 02/15/12 - 03:14 pm
Until there are enforced

Until there are enforced consequences for breaking the law crime will continue to escalate. Three months of my tax dollars feeding her, housing her, taking care of her medical needs and now off she goes to enjoy the money they sent back to Mexico in anticipation of being "caught".

Knowing this many more illegals will head this way?

jbartley 02/15/12 - 04:11 pm
Don't forget they payed taxes

Don't forget they payed taxes everyear using false SS numbers and the Goverment took all of their assets in the US. In this case I think the
taxpayers came out ahead, unless they keep Hugo in jail for very long.

copperhead 02/15/12 - 05:15 pm
jbartley,what about the

jbartley,what about the millions they sent back to mexico anticipating their deportation? I guess that was their reward for being such law abiding criminals!

sewerbabe 02/16/12 - 01:32 pm
It is sad for those who were

It is sad for those who were brought here illegally, knew the risk and would suffer the consequences just to have a glance at a better life. Being in an American prison is very enticing compared to living in Mexico homeless. No one should forget the real reason they are here, someone promised them a job. That job being one overseen by American contractors. They should be held accountable too. I didn't see any names of contractors mentioned here? La Fuentes appears to be bogus so far. Just drive to a Columbia County construction site, get out of your car and ask a worker who his boss is? Oh, don't be fooled by the "deaf card" that is a very old trick..

cruiser93 02/16/12 - 04:10 pm
"Stewart added that the Diaz

"Stewart added that the Diaz couple are also losing most of their property, including a $1.7 million home and several vehicles, to forfeiture."
“We went aggressively after as many assets as we could,” Stewart said."

Not aggressively enough... what do you mean lost MOST of their property ??? If that was an American citizen we would have lost ALL of our assets !!! That's why this country is so mucked up!
I have been in construction since I was 9 and I'm 45 now. I have worked in 3 states and I have seen this crap for at least the last 18 years so no one is going to convince me that the "authorities" go after this as "aggressively" as they can. I could write a freakin 20 page essay on this if I don't stop so, I will stop. Everyone who will read my comment knows what I am talking about anyway.

uncle scrooge
uncle scrooge 02/17/12 - 08:52 am
Don't feel bad, on a 1000 man

Don't feel bad, on a 1000 man plus construction job here in Southeast Texas there were nine Hispanic workers with the same social security number but neither the payroll office or the social security admin caught the error. Wonder if they wanted to, or were taxes even paid in to the goverment. Until the big shots running the companies are jailed according to laws already on the books this country will continue having this problem. I do not blame anyone for trying to better theirself but do it the right way- work visa etc.

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