Driver in Fatal Wreck Indicted on Immigration Violation
Posted June 20, 2007
Updated June 21, 2007
Raleigh, N.C. — A man charged in connection with a fatal wreck on Interstate 40 two weeks ago was indicted Wednesday on a federal charge of being an illegal immigrant.
Ricardo Contreras-De La Torre, 24, is being held in the Wake County Jail on a $1.2 million bond. He is charged with DWI, felony death by motor vehicle, two counts of assault with a deadly weapon, no operator’s license and careless and reckless driving in connection with a June 4 wreck on I-40 near the Wade Avenue exit.
The SUV Contreras-De La Torre was driving veered across the highway median onto westbound I-40 and hit a Kia Optima driven by 54-year-old George Alwyn Smith. Smith died in the wreck.
According to a federal indictment, Contreras-De La Torre attempted to enter the U.S. illegally twice in 2004.
A passenger in the SUV, Baudel Alvarez-Casteneda, was indicted on a charge of illegally entering the country after being deported. According to the indictment, he had been deported to Mexico from Laredo, Texas, in October 2000.
Both men face a maximum sentence of two years in prison and a fine of $250,000.