“Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love, it’s an act of commitment to your family,” Jeb Bush told Fox News host Shannon Bream at town hall event at the George Bush Presidential Library Center.
“I honestly think that is a different kind of crime, that there should be a price paid, but it shouldn’t rile people up that people are actually coming to this country to provide for their families,” he said.
Contrary to what presidential hopefuls Bush (R) or Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), who welcomes illegals as citizens, may think illegal immigration is a criminal enterprise associated with felony. These felonies include murder, according to a guilty plea issued April 24 in U.S. District Court in Richmond.
Manuel Garcia-Rojas, 28, of Richmond, eventually pleaded guilty to racketeering and attempted robbery. He faces up to 40 years in prison when he is sentenced July 31. Three charges were dropped as part of a plea agreement.
In court, Garcia-Rojas said no when U.S. Magistrate Judge Hannah Lauck asked if he was pleading guilty because he was, indeed, guilty, Associated Press reported. Speaking in Spanish through an interpreter, Garcia-Rojas told the judge: “Like I said to my lawyer, I am guilty of conspiracy but not of attempted robbery.”
After a brief consultation with his attorney, Garcia-Rojas was asked again if he was guilty of both counts. He replied, “Si.”
Garcia-Rojas was working for a fake ID organization based in Mexico with operations in Virginia and five other states. His main duty was to sell illegal immigrants for fake social security cards and green cards, priced anywhere from $120 to $250 per set.
According to the indictment, the U.S. operations were directed by Hildago Flores, who instructed cell runners to send the money to Mexico. Financial records show More than $1 million was sent back between 2008 and October 2013.
Garcia-Rojas and three of his co-defendants were accused of trying to assault a rival ID maker in Richmond and steal his equipment, according to federal officials. The attack was prevented due to a traffic stop, prosecutors say. Nine other defendants who were indicted along with Garcia-Rojas late last year are scheduled for trial June 2.
The organization allegedly began in 2008, according to the indictment. Before it was taken down, runners allegedly wired $1 million to Mexico. One defendant was convicted of killing a rival ID maker in Arkansas and was sentenced to two consecutive life terms.