The opinion of the court was delivered by: Rosemond, United States Magistrate Judge.
EXTRADITION CERTIFICATION AND ORDER OF COMMITMENT WITHOUT BOND
On March 11, 1996, in accordance with the provisions of the May
4, 1978 Extradition Treaty in full force and effect between the
United Mexican States and the United States of America, the
Embassy of Mexico formally requested the provisional arrest for
extradition purposes of Lauro Soto Salas, Maurilio Soto Campa,
Meliton Soto Campa, and Pablo Soto Campa. A warrant of arrest and
the equivalent of an American indictment were initiated in and
issued by the First Criminal and Civil Trial Court of the
Judicial District of Rio Grande, Zacatecas, and later said arrest
warrant and said American indictment equivalent were assigned by
extension of jurisdiction to the Third Criminal Court of the
Judicial District of Zacatecas, Capital of the State of
Zacatecas. The warrant of arrest and the American indictment
equivalent charged Lauro Soto Salas, Maurilio Soto Campa, Meliton
Soto Campa, and Pablo Soto Campa with the intentional aggravated
homicides of four Mexican citizens. Extradition is sought for
On March 5, 1997, after an extradition hearing, this Court
found Lauro Soto Salas subject to extradition and issued an
"Extradition Certification and Order of Commitment Without
Bond". Subsequently, Lauro Soto Salas was extradited to the
Government of Mexico, where he was tried and convicted of the
four murders in Zacatecas, Mexico. More specifically, on June 29,
1998, the Third Criminal Judge of the Judicial District of
Zacatecas issued a verdict of guilty, finding Lauro Soto Salas
criminally responsible for the commission of the crime of
homicide. Lauro Soto Salas was sentenced to 30 years in prison,
and is presently confined in the Regional Social Rehabilitation
Center of Ciemeguillas, Zacatecas.
In February of this year, defendant Meliton Soto Campa was
arrested in Wichita, Kansas. On February 26, 2001, the
"Government's Ex Parte Motion To Dismiss Complaint Without
Prejudice" against defendant Meliton Soto Campa was filed.*fn1
The motion was granted on the same day.*fn2 The Government
subsequently initiated extradition proceedings against Meliton in
the District of Kansas.
Pablo Soto Campa remains a fugitive of Mexican justice, and has
been so since March 23, 1995, the date on which the Trial Court
of Family Matters, sitting in Rio Grande, Zacatecas, issued the
initial arrest warrant against him charging him with the four
Zacatecas murders at issue. Defendant Maurilio Soto Campa is the
brother of Meliton and Pablo Soto Campa, and the first cousin of
previously extradited defendant, Lauro Soto Campa.
On August 13, August 21, and September 14, 2001, pursuant to
Title 18, United States Code, Section 3184, following the
provisional arrest of Maurilio Soto Campa upon the formal request
of the Government of Mexico, the extradition hearing in this
matter was held. The Court, having considered the pleadings and
written submissions of the parties; the documentary evidence
introduced on behalf of the Government
of Mexico; defendant Maurilio Soto Campa's opposition to
extradition; the testimony of witnesses Jesus John Gonzalez,
Gustavo Soto, Virgillo Soto, and defendant Maurilio Soto Campa;
the evidence presented by both parties; and the oral arguments of
counsel of record, hereby makes the following Findings of Fact
and Conclusions of Law, and in so doing, certifies the
extraditability of Maurilio Soto Campa to the Secretary of State
of the United States of America on the charged offense.
1. A valid extradition treaty exists between the United
States of America and the United Mexican States. There is no
challenge to the full force and effect of said treaty.
2. The extradition documents submitted by the United States
of America on behalf of the United Mexican States in support of
the Embassy of Mexico's request for the extradition of defendant
Maurilio Soto Campa, as well as the extradition of his fugitive
co-defendant and brother, to-wit: Pablo Soto Campa, set out the
statutory bases and penalties, the underlying facts, and all
necessary and related information as to the warrants of arrest
obtained in and issued by the Mexican courts against these two
men. No challenge to the authenticity of these documents was
3. The evidence admitted at Maurilio Soto Campa's extradition
hearing demonstrated that the arrest warrants, as well as the
other documents demanding the surrender of defendant Maurilio
Soto Campa and his co-defendants were properly and legally
authenticated pursuant to the terms of the Treaty and
18 U.S.C. § 3190. No challenge to the authenticity of these documents was
4. The defendant Maurilio Soto Campa is in fact the same
individual charged in Mexico and subject to the arrest warrant at
issue. He is also the same individual who is the subject of the
request for extradition. After his arrest, defendant Maurilio
Soto Campa admitted to Deputy United States Marshal, Jesus John
Gonzales, that he was in fact Maurilio Soto Campa, that he was
the subject of the request for extradition, and that he was fully
aware of the fact that he was wanted in Mexico for the Zacatecas
Government: Did he admit to you specifically that
he was Maurilio Soto Campa at that point?
Government: And did he indicate to you whether or
not he knew whether or not he was wanted in Mexico?
Gonzales: He said he was aware of the fact that he
Government: And did he tell you anything about why
he was wanted?
Gonzales: He said he was wanted for murders down
5. It should be noted that the United States Marshal Service
has been searching for defendant Maurilio Soto Campa for some
years. When asked by investigators of the Marshal Service about
the whereabouts of Maurilio Soto Campa, members of the Soto Campa
family, including his mother and his wife, all denied having any
knowledge regarding his whereabouts. In this regard, the United
States Marshal Service found members of the Soto Campa family to
7. When Maurilio Soto Campa was arrested on May 11, 2000, he
used an alias, and had on his person a false identification card,
as well as, a false driver's license from the State of Kansas.
The alias used by Maurilio, and the name on the false
identification card was Jose Luis Figueroa Diaz.*fn6 Only after
being shown certain family photographs of himself, did the
defendant Maurilio Soto Campa recant, as noted above, and admit
to the investigators that he was in fact Maurilio Soto
8. The criminal charges of intentional aggravated homicide
presently pending against defendant Maurilio Soto Campa and his
co-defendants are violations of the Criminal Code for the State
of Zacatecas, Mexico. The charges are considered crimes in both
the United States and Mexico. The Treaty with Mexico expressly
provides that murder is an extraditable offense.
9. The offenses for which extradition is sought are each
punishable under the laws of both Mexico and the United States by
imprisonment for a period of more than one year and, thus, are
covered under Article 2 of the Treaty.
10. In accordance with Article 13(3) of the May 4, 1978
Extradition Treaty between the United States and Mexico, the
Government of the United States provides legal representation in
United States courts for the Government of Mexico in its
extradition requests, and the Government of Mexico provides legal
representation in its courts for extradition requests made by the
United States. At the extradition hearing herein, the Government
of the United States introduced evidence on behalf of Mexico. The
evidence presented at the hearing shows that all of the
requirements of the extradition treaty between the United States
and Mexico have been met. No challenge to the authenticity of
these documents was made.
11. The criminal charges and warrants of arrest are
predicated on the declarations, accusations, and statements of
eyewitnesses to the crimes charged, together, in some instances,
with corroborating physical evidence, as well as other credible
and persuasive evidence presented at the hearing. No challenge to
the authenticity of these documents was made.
12. On the morning of March 20, 1995, in the village of Villa
Cardenas, belonging to the municipality of General Francisco R.
Murguia, of the Government of the free and sovereign State of
Zacatecas, of the United Mexican States, four men, namely, Juan
Manuel Ortega Mares, Jose Vicente Ortega Rangel, Arnulfo Ortega
Mares, and Maurilio Mares Aguero were shot and killed in three
different locations in and around Villa Cardenas.
13. Defendant Maurilio Soto Campa is the brother to
co-defendants Meliton Soto Campa and Pablo Soto Campa. He is
first cousin to co-defendant Lauro Soto Salas. Prior to the date
of the four murders, all of the co-defendants resided in Chicago.
First cousin Lauro Soto Salas, having been tried, convicted, and
sentenced by the Mexican courts for the four murders at issue, is
now an inmate in the Penitentiary of Cieneguillas, Zacatecas.
14. As noted earlier, the parents of brothers Maurilio Soto
Campa, Meliton Soto Campa, and Pablo Soto Campa are Arturo Soto
and Cristina Campa. They reside in Chicago. The three brothers
and first cousin Lauro Soto Campa all share the same paternal
grandparents, and all four were born in Villa Cardenas, in
15. Maurilio Soto Campa left Mexico in 1984, when he was 13
years old. He has returned only twice. The last time that he was
in Mexico was to bury his brother in 1995. He was in Mexico then
for about a week to 10 days.
16. Maurilio Soto Campa's brother, Mario Soto Campa, was
murdered in Villa Cardenas, Zacatecas, Mexico, on March 2, 1995.
Maurilio, Pablo, and Meliton Soto Campa, and their first cousin,
Lauro Soto Campa, all attended Mario's funeral in Villa Cardenas
in March of 1995.
17. Maurilio Soto Campa was absent from his place of
employment in the Chicago area between March 18, 1995 and April
18. Pablo Soto Campa quit his job in the Chicago area on
March 3, 1995. Pablo told his employer that he was quitting to go
to Mexico. Pablo returned to work and was rehired on December 11,
19. Meliton Soto Campa was absent from his place of
employment in the Chicago area for about three months, beginning
in early March of 1995. Meliton told his employer that he had to
go to Mexico because his brother had been murdered there.
20. The murders of Juan Manuel Ortega Mares, Jose Vicente
Ortega Rangel, Arnulfo Ortega Mares, and Maurilio Mares Aguero
occurred on March 20, 1995 in and around certain locations in
Villa Cardenas, in Zacatecas. In February of 1996, defendant
Maurilio Soto Campa's brother, Gustavo Soto, told Deputy United
States Marshal Jesus Gonzales that Maurilio and his other two
brothers, Pablo and Meliton, and his cousin, Lauro Soto Salas,
all went to Mexico to avenge the murder of their brother Mario
Soto Campa. At the August 21st, 2001 extradition hearing,
Gustavo, 24 years old with only a first year of high school
education, denied ever making the aforesaid statement to Deputy
Marshal Gonzales. However, Gustavo was not a credible witness.
For one thing, he denied that his brothers ever went to his
murdered brother's funeral. At the September 14th, 2001 reopening
and continuation of his extradition hearing, Maurilio Soto Campa,
himself, admitted that he had gone to Mexico to bury his brother.
In addition, Virgillo Soto, the older brother of Maurilio, Pablo,
Meliton, and Gustavo, similarly testified at the August 21st
extradition hearing that Maurilio was in attendance at his
murdered brother's funeral:
Government: And you say he [Mario Soto Campa] was
killed in Villa Cardenas, Mexico, is that correct?
Government: Do you remember what year . . .
Virgillo S: It was in '95.
Government: Do you remember what ...