Hope Mills immigrant sent back to Honduras for machete slayings charges

ATLANTA (WNCN) — A man who was living in Hope Mills has now been sent back to his home country of Honduras where he is accused of using a machete to hack to two people to death nearly 25 years ago.

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Francisco Escobar-Orellana was flown back to San Pedro Sula, Honduras on Monday after he was taken into custody Feb. 21 at his Hope Mills home.

An arrest warrant signed in May 2005 charges Escobar with a 1993 deadly machete attack, which happened in a liquor store.

Federal authorities don’t know exactly when or how Escobar entered the United States, according to a news release from federal authorities announcing his arrest. They say he was in the country unlawfully.

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After he was captured, a federal immigration judge on March 23 ordered Escobar removed from the United States.

Atlanta deportation officers transferred Escobar from the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Georgia, to the Columbus Metropolitan Airport.

Escobar Monday in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. ICE photo. CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

Then,  Escobar was taken by an ICE Air operations flight to San Pedro Sula, Honduras, where he was transferred to Honduran law enforcement custody.

Escobar was arrested in Hope Mills by a fugitive operations team based out of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s field office in Atlanta. The agency said the arrest came during a “targeted enforcement operation.”

“ICE is focused on identifying, arresting and removing public safety threats, such as convicted criminal aliens and gang members, as well as individuals who have violated our nation’s immigration laws,” said Sean Gallagher, an ICE official, in a news release.

“ICE Fugitive Operations Teams conduct targeted enforcement operations toward these identified threats to public safety. North Carolina residents are safer today thanks to the professionalism and hard work of these dedicated officers,” Gallagher added.

Members of the public who have information about foreign fugitives can contact ICE by calling the ICE tip line at 1 (866) 347-2423 or internationally at 001-1802-872-6199. They can also file a tip online by completing ICE’s online tip form.

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