Illegal Immigrant Arrested for Child Rape of 11-Year-Old

A Guatemalan national, residing illegally in the United States, was apprehended in Utah on charges of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl, as per recent reports. The accused, 26-year-old Jonathan Estuardo Ruano Garcia, was taken into custody by the Provo Police Department in the early hours of Monday.

Ruano Garcia faces serious felony charges, including child rape, enticing a minor, and forgery. The forgery accusation is linked to a Social Security card found in Ruano Garcia’s possession during his booking at the Utah County Jail. The card, according to law enforcement officials, seemed inauthentic.

Upon questioning about the Social Security card, Ruano Garcia confessed that it was counterfeit, purchased after his arrival in the United States. Late Sunday night, a mother returned to her Provo apartment to find an unknown adult male exiting her residence. The man hastily departed after making eye contact with her.

The mother discovered her 11-year-old daughter unclothed in the apartment hallway. The young girl informed her mother that a man she had met online had visited the apartment and engaged in sexual activity with her. Ruano Garcia, the Guatemalan national, reportedly confessed to the police that he had sexual intercourse with the girl for a duration of 20 to 30 minutes, under the impression that she was 13 or 14 years old.

The accused had allegedly first encountered the minor at a soccer game and maintained contact with her through social media. Ruano Garcia confessed to having explicit conversations with the minor and sending her inappropriate images of himself. The police were able to locate Ruano Garcia at his residence in the neighboring town of Lehi, using the social media exchanges as a lead.

Ruano Garcia is currently detained at the Utah County Jail without bail, with an additional hold from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Recently, ICE reported a significant number of arrests involving illegal immigrants charged with sex crimes. Between February 5 and 16, 2024, ICE apprehended 275 illegal noncitizen sex offenders in a nationwide law enforcement operation.

ICE Deputy Director and Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Director, Patrick J. Lechleitner, stated that ICE is dedicated to safeguarding America by arresting and deporting those who pose a threat to public safety and violate the law. He credited the relentless efforts of the Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers for making communities safer by apprehending 275 individuals willing to commit sex crimes against innocent people, including children.