MISSION, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The third man who tried to smuggle nearly a dozen people into the U.S. pleaded guilty to his role in the conspiracy which resulted in the death of two, U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani announced.
Francisco Javier Quintanilla-Alcocer, a 38-year-old Mexican citizen, pleaded guilty Friday.
The smuggling attempt
On Oct. 22, 2021, Quintanilla-Alcocer, Brandon Cibriano-Gonzalez, a 21-year-old Mexican citizen, and Orlando Andres Garcia, 23 of Mission, tried to smuggle 10 Mexican nationals into the United States, a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office stated.
Cibriano-Gonzalez and Garcia previously admitted their guilt.
On that day in Palmview, Cibriano-Gonzalez acted as a brush guide to smuggle the group of migrants into the country and met with Quintanilla-Alcocer and Garcia who were driving a Chevrolet Impala and Chevrolet Malibu, respectively. The migrants and Cibriano-Gonzalez loaded into the vehicles and left the scene.
The incident involving death
Shortly after, law enforcement tried to stop both vehicles and a high-speed chase ensued. Garcia’s vehicle turned in an attempt to throw off police while Quintanilla-Alcocer continued to speed away and turned onto a dirt road in Mission where the his car rolled and crashed into a homeowner’s fence.
Three people were ejected and two died at the scene. Quintanilla-Alcocer was arrested a short time later. Phone records also indicated that Quintanilla-Alcocer and Garcia had been consistently communicating throughout the high-speed pursuit, according to the release.
“During these conversations, Garcia instructed Quintanilla to go faster,” the release stated.
Quintanilla-Alcocer’s sentencing is set for May 25, while Cibriano-Gonzalez and Garcia are set for April 18. All three men face up to life in federal prison. They remain in federal custody.