Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Smuggling Cases Tossed

July 13, 2006|From the Associated Press

PHOENIX — The dismissal of the first conspiracy prosecutions to go to trial under Arizona's new immigrant-smuggling law won't set a precedent, but defense attorneys said Wednesday that the decision boded well in a handful of other cases.

The 11-month-old law targets those who smuggle immigrants. A prosecutor has said that those who paid to be sneaked into the country also can be charged as conspirators to the crime.

A judge threw out cases Tuesday against two of 48 illegal immigrants to be charged as conspirators, saying prosecutors didn't provide enough evidence that two or more immigrants had agreed to be smuggled.

The decision was based on the facts of that case and wouldn't set a precedent because evidence varies from case to case, one attorney said.

"It's not a global ruling," said Timothy Agan, a lawyer whose client is among the 48 immigrants and was scheduled to go to trial next month.

Meanwhile, a Maricopa County Superior Court jury on Wednesday convicted 33-year-old Javier Ruiz of human smuggling. He was the person accused of smuggling the two men whose cases were thrown out.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|