BOSTON — On July 20, Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Boston removed Thiago Jorge-Alves, 37, an unlawfully present Brazilian fugitive wanted for drug trafficking in Brazil. Authorities removed him via U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Air Operations after a federal immigration judge ordered his removal.

“People wanted for drug trafficking in their native country cannot hide from their crimes in our communities,” said ERO Boston Field Office Director Todd Lyons. “ERO Boston will continue to work closely with our international law enforcement partners to keep our neighborhoods safe from wanted foreign fugitives who seek to avoid justice.”

In January 2022, U.S. Border Patrol arrested Jorge near San Luis, Arizona, after he entered the country unlawfully. Officials served him with a notice to appear before an immigration judge and released him.

In February 2023, Brazilian law enforcement authorities began actively seeking him to answer for drug trafficking charges in Minas Gerais, Brazil.

On May 23, 2023, ERO Boston arrested Jorge on his immigration violations, holding him in custody pending an immigration hearing with the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). At his hearing on June 23, 2023, an immigration judge issued Jorge a final order of removal and ERO Boston proceeded with his removal.

ICE Air Operations facilitates the transfer and removal of noncitizens via commercial airlines and chartered flights in support of ICE field offices and other U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) initiatives. In fiscal year 2022, ERO conducted 72,177 removals to more than 150 countries worldwide.

Noncitizens placed into removal proceedings receive their legal due process from federal immigration judges in the immigration courts, which are administered by the Justice Department’s EOIR. EOIR is an agency within the U.S. Department of Justice and is separate from the Department of Homeland Security and ICE. Immigration judges in these courts make decisions based on the merits of each individual case. ERO officers carry out the removal decisions made by the federal immigration judges.

In fiscal year 2022, ERO arrested 46,396 noncitizens with criminal histories. This group had 198,498 associated charges and convictions, including 21,531 assault offenses; 8,164 sex and sexual assault offenses; 5,554 weapons offenses; 1,501 homicide-related offenses; and 1,114 kidnapping offenses.

Members of the public who have information about foreign fugitives are urged to contact ICE by calling the ICE tip line at 866-347-2423 or internationally at 001-1802-872-6199. They can also file a tip online by completing ICE’s online tip form. Callers may remain anonymous.

As one of ICE’s three operational directorates, ERO is the principal federal law enforcement authority in charge of domestic immigration enforcement. ERO’s mission is to protect the homeland through the arrest and removal of those who undermine the safety of U.S. communities and the integrity of U.S. immigration laws, and its primary areas of focus are interior enforcement operations, management of the agency’s detained and non-detained populations, and repatriation of noncitizens who have received final orders of removal. ERO’s workforce consists of more than 7,700 law enforcement and non-law enforcement support personnel across 25 domestic field offices and 208 locations nationwide, 30 overseas postings, and multiple temporary duty travel assignments along the border.

For more news and information on how the ERO Boston field office carries out its immigration enforcement mission, follow us on Twitter @EROBoston.