Four Chilean nationals, Hernan Parraquez-Mondaca, Michael Aguilar-Mondaca, Sandrino Rojas-Palma, and Nicholas Caceres-Hernandez, have been charged with felony assault and armed robbery in Oakland County, Michigan. The charges stem from their alleged involvement in violent smash-and-grab attacks on MJ Diamonds and the jewelry department inside Macy’s in August. The suspects, who wore masks and used hammers to smash glass cases, are accused of stealing jewelry after spraying employees with pepper spray. Although they did not use firearms, the incidents resulted in felony charges.
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency has filed detainers on all four Chilean nationals, but it remains unclear how they entered the United States, whether through the southern border or temporary visas. The suspects are currently held without bail in the Oakland County Jail.
These charges come at a time when Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard has warned about an increasing trend of illegal aliens from the southern border engaging in burglaries, often referred to as “crime tourism.” Sheriff Bouchard stated that transnational gangs from South America are targeting American communities, including Oakland County, and are primarily interested in stealing high-value items such as jewelry, watches, and purses. These stolen goods are then sold at significantly reduced prices to fences.