Undocumented Immigrant Had Been Deported Twice, Facing Federal Immigration Charges in Death of Two, Including NFL Player

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An undocumented immigrant has been charged in the deaths of two people, one of them an NFL player, as a result of a drunk driving incident.  The man, 37-year-old Manuel Orrego-Zavala is facing federal immigration charges after re-entering the country after two prior deportations.

Orrego-Zavala is accused of hitting 26-year-old Indianapolis Colts linebacker Edwin Jackson and his Uber driver, 54-yearl-old Jeffrey Monroe while driving drunk on a highway in Indianapolis early Sunday morning.

It was revealed shortly after the incident that Orrego-Zavala, a Guatemalan citizen, is in the country illegally and had been deported twice, once in 2007 and once in 2009.  He also has a prior conviction for driving under the influence in California.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a directive instructing prosecutors to prioritize charges against immigrant who illegally re-enter the U.S.  In announcing the federal immigration charges, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Indiana, Josh Minkler, cited Sessons’ directive.

“The defendant in this case allegedly re-entered the country illegally for the second time before he put the public safety of Indianapolis at risk and took the lives of two innocent men early Sunday morning,” Minkler said in a statement.  “Following the rule of law is the foundation of our American democracy, and my office is committed to fulfilling the Attorney General’s directive.”

Orrego-Zavala has not been formally charged in the crash yet.  He is due for an initial court appearance today.

 

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