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Cuban citizen sentenced to two years in prison for smuggling aliens in Franklin County


A Cuban citizen was sentenced Wednesday to two years in a federal prison for smuggling two undocumented Brazilian citizens into the United States through Franklin County.

Rubicel Cisnero, age not available, also was ordered in U.S. District Court, Albany, to undergo an additional year of supervision upon his release from prison after a Sept. 18 guilty plea to alien smuggling for commercial advantage and financial gain.

According to court documents, on March 22, 2012, Mr. Cisnero and an unidentified person picked up a Brazilian man in Toronto to help the man enter the United States. The man was not legally allowed to be here because he has a prior felony conviction for cocaine possession. Mr. Cisnero then picked up a Brazilian woman, also in an attempt to bring her illegally into the United States. He then traveled to Montreal and awaited instructions from Perez R. Bueno, a Brazilian citizen who already was in the United States.

Mr. Cisnero then met Mr. Bueno near the Canadian-U.S. border, at which time Mr. Bueno and the other two Brazilians walked across the border, entering Franklin County near Burke. Using sensors at the border, U.S. Border Patrol agents were able to determine that activity had taken place and to view photographs of the three people. Agents responded to East Road near Burke and located a Chevrolet Impala driven about 4 miles south of the border with Mr. Bueno, the other two Brazilians and Kilme D. Souza Coutinho, also a Brazilian citizen, inside.

Mr. Bueno told agents he had been denied a visa to enter the country legally but had walked across the border about 10 years earlier. According to court documents, he was unable to pay the people who had helped him walk into the country and was participating in the March 2012 smuggling in an attempt to repay the debt.

Mr. Bueno, who has been living in the Boston area, pleaded guilty in July 2012 to bringing two undocumented aliens into the country and was sentenced Dec. 21 to three years in prison. Following his prison term, he will be deported. Mr. Coutinho also pleaded guilty to alien smuggling and was sentenced Dec. 21 to 21 months in custody. He, too, faces deportation.

Mr. Cisnero is expected to serve his year of supervised release in Florida. He does not face deportation because the U.S. does not deport people to Cuba, according to court documents.

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