Coast Guard Biometrics Nabs One of Puerto Rico’s Most Wanted Criminals
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — The Coast Guard transferred one of Puerto Rico’s most wanted criminals to local authorities May 3, the Coast guard 7th District announced in a release.
Transferred was Doel Joel Ortiz Cirino, 23.
On May 2, the crew of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection of Air and Marine aircraft crew, on a routine patrol in the Mona Passage, located a grossly overloaded yola with 18 individuals aboard 8 miles northwest of Mona Island, Puerto Rico. The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Napier was diverted to the location, arrived on scene and embarked 18 adult migrants.
Once aboard the cutter, the crew was able to identify 14 Dominicans and three Colombians.
Also identified was Ortiz Cirino, a U.S. citizen from Puerto Rico, who retracted his previous claim of being a Dominican national. The cutter crew utilized biometrics technology to confirm Ortiz Cirino was Puerto Rican.
“The Coast Guard’s biometrics program is an important tool that allows us to verify the identity of migrants and suspected drug traffickers with whom we come in contact on the high seas,” said Capt. Jason Ryan, Coast Guard 7th District enforcement branch chief. “Without biometrics, we can only depend on people’s claims at face value when we interdict migrants without travel documentation. In this case, biometrics confirmed the identity of a wanted criminal suspect who we were able to turn over to local authorities for prosecution.”
After further investigation, the Coast Guard verified he was No. 10 on Puerto Rico’s Top 10 Most Wanted list.
“Doel Joel Ortiz Cirino was accused in October 2016 for the murder of Nayeli Sofía Manso Fuentes, who was 3 years old, in a drive-by shooting in Loíza,” said Esq. Olga Castellón, the chief prosecutor of the Department of Justice of Puerto Rico. “Now that the he has been transferred to us by the United States Coast Guard and is under our custody, we will continue the prosecution of this murder case at the Carolina Courthouse. Now justice will be served to this innocent victim.”