CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - A 23-year-old Mexican National
has been charged with unlawful transportation of aliens resulting in death
following the fatal alien smuggling attempt in which six people were left for
dead, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
Authorities arrested Ivan Dario Puga-Moreno, of
Montemorelos, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on June 6, 2019, in Houston. He is expected
to make an initial appearance June 10 at 10:00 a.m. before U.S. Magistrate
Judge Dena Palermo in Houston.
According to the criminal complaint filed in Corpus
Christi, authorities discovered a wrecked Chevrolet Suburban in a ditch in
Robstown on June 5. Six people were found deceased at the scene with nine more
requiring hospitalization due to their significant injuries, according to the
The complaint alleges the subsequent investigation
revealed Puga-Moreno was the driver of the wrecked vehicle and was attempting
to smuggle approximately 18 illegal aliens from South Texas to Houston.
Puga-Moreno allegedly fled the scene following the accident.
Puga-Moreno was smuggling the illegal aliens with the
assistance of a brush guide from his hometown in Mexico, according to the
If convicted, Puga-Moreno could potentially face the
Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security
Investigations conducted the investigation along with the FBI, U.S. Marshals
Service, Coast Guard, Border Patrol, police departments in Robstown and Corpus
Christi, Nueces County Sherriff's Office and Robstown Fire/Emergency Medical
Assistant U.S. Attorneys John Cody Barnes and Jeremy
Fugate are prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint is an accusation of criminal
conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through
due process of law.