Mexican national on the run for child rape charges in Utah caught, police say

SALT LAKE CITY — A Mexican national who has been on the run since 2010 was caught in Mexico City, and has arrived back in Utah where he faces charges related to child rape, officials said Monday.

Efren Ortiz-Gonzalez, of West Jordan, was on the run since February of 2010, after a warrant was issued for his arrest, stemming from charges of aggravated sexual abuse of a child and rape of a child, a press release made by the U.S. Marshals in Salt Lake City said.

The release stated that Gonzalez was in the United States illegally and fled to Mexico, where he has lived for the last nine years.

“In October 2012, U.S. Marshals Violent Fugitive Apprehension Team (VFAST) joined the search for Gonzalez with the request of the West Jordan Police Department,” the release said. “U.S. Marshals determined Gonzalez was hiding in Mexico, but his exact location remained unknown.”

Marshal officials said that a request for extradition of Gonzalez was sent to the Mexican government, but he remained on the run.

On March 14, 2018, officials said that Gonzalez was arrested in Mexico City. He remained in custody in the country until Jan. 30, when he was turned over to the custody of U.S. Marshals at the Mexico City International Airport, the release said.

“Gonzalez was booked into Salt Lake County Jail and is awaiting criminal proceedings on the Aggravated Sexual Abuse and Rape charges,” according to the release.

“Fugitives often think they can commit these heinous crimes in the United States and then escape to their native country, but US Marshals are determined to work with our international partners and give these victims of violent crime the justice they deserve,” said U.S. Marshal Matthew D. Harris.

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