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Roberto Rotos, a 30-year-old Kenbridge man of 605 Broad Street and a self-admitted illegal immigrant from Guatemala, pled guilty recently in Lunenburg Circuit Court to a felony offense of Driving Under the Influence, Third Offense Within 10 Years, and to a felony offense of Perjury as a result of lying under oath about his identity. He was also convicted of a misdemeanor of Driving While Suspended.
According to Commonwealth’s Attorney Robert Clement, ICE will be notified and should be deporting him upon completion of serving his sentence, although there is no guarantee.
In a summary of evidence provided by Clement, Kenbridge Police Aaron Peter stopped a vehicle on April 18, 2015 about 9:04 p.m. for erratic driving. Rotos failed sobriety tests conducted by Officer Peter, was arrested and was determined to have an alcohol level of .21, nearly three times the legal threshold of .08. He admitted to Officer Peter that he was in the United States illegally from Guatemala.
Clement said that if it had not been for the alertness of Officer Peter, Rotos may have only been charged with a misdemeanor second offense of DUI within ten years. Peter, however, realized that in 2005 the same man had been arrested for DUI in Kenbridge under another name, Vonifilio Ramirez Ramirez, using a different date of birth and other identifying information.
When Rotos had a bond hearing on May 26, 2015, Clement cross-examined him about the other identity and conviction which he denied, despite being warned of committing perjury. Officer Peter then pursued obtaining documentation of fingerprint cards from the Kenbridge Police Department and the Virginia State Police. He submitted them to the state lab which concluded that the prints of Rotos and Ramirez were from the same man. As a result, Clement indicted Rotos with Perjury for lying in court under oath.
Rotos’s additional ten years and two months are suspended upon conditions of good behavior, including abstaining from alcohol and illegal drugs, supervised probation for one year, counseling for substance abuse, payment of a $1,000 fine, suspension of his right to obtain a driver’s license indefinitely, and warrantless searches and seizures, including submission to preliminary breath tests, which are not normally admissible in court, but stipulated to be admissible in his plea agreement.