Two Mexican citizens were sentenced last Tuesday following their guilty pleas to transporting illegal aliens.
The pair were caught Sept. 9 when Ramon Vasques-Balcasar, 22, was driving a van that overturned on I-70 near Brazil. According to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice, the van held 14 illegal aliens, including Balcasar and another defendent, Rogelio Morales-Martinez, 24. The van was rated to transport seven people.
Balcasar told officials the hood flew open and he lost control while trying to pass a semi-truck. The van ended up on the side of the road with some of the illegal alien passengers ejected and injured. Injuries include a broken ankle, a broken nose, a concussion and severe lacerations to the face and shoulder of one woman. Police officers followed a trail of blood into a nearby field where 11 of the illegal aliens were hiding.
The aliens had started their trip from the Phoenix, Ariz., area. Each had paid money to get into the United States and were supposed to pay more money to Balcasar and Martinez when they reached their destinations in South Carolina, North Carolina, Maryland, Tennessee and Florida.
The aliens will be deported and Balcasar and Martinez were sentenced to 12 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Sarah E. Barker on March 8.
When the defendents are released from prison, they will also be deported and be required to pay $30, 636 to hospitals in the Brazil area that treated the victims. The hopsitals were not identified in the Department of Justice report.