A Border Parol officer watches illegal immigrants in a holding facility. Border Patrol photo
A Border Parol officer watches undocumented immigrants in a holding facility. Border Patrol photo

Federal immigration agents in the Southland arrested 244 foreign nationals who are in the country illegally and have prior criminal records, authorities said Monday.

The number of arrests set a record for a four-day sting, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The operation, which ended Thursday, included 99 arrests in Los Angeles County, 55 in Orange County and 24 in Riverside County, according to ICE.

There were also 43 arrests in San Bernardino County, 20 in Santa Barbara County and three in San Luis Obispo County.

The majority of the arrestees had criminal records that included felony convictions for serious or violent offenses, federal officials said. The vast majority — 191 people — are originally from Mexico.

Among those arrested was a 50-year-old Salvadoran national arrested on Sunday in Sunland who had been convicted last year in Los Angeles County on two criminal counts involving child sex abuse, according to ICE.

Also arrested was Vincente Onofre-Ramirez, 35, who was taken into custody at his home in Santa Ana on Tuesday. Onofre-Ramirez, a Mexican national, was convicted in 2002 in New York of sexual abuse with force, and he was deported after serving his sentence.

Onofre-Ramirez and three other people arrested during the operation will be prosecuted for felony re-entry after removal from the United States.

According to federal authorities, people arrested during the sting who have pending deportation orders or who returned to the United States after being deported are subject to immediate removal from the country. The remaining individuals will have a hearing before an immigration judge.

— City News Service 

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