Siblings indicted for murder-for-hire plot could face life in prison

Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, where the homicide rate peaked in 2010, but has had a rapid decline.

Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, where the homicide rate peaked in 2010, but has had a rapid decline.

Three El Paso siblings could face up to life in prison for hiring someone to travel across the border into Mexico and murder an entire family, the Justice Department said Monday.

According to the federal indictment, Dalia Valencia, 43, Samuel Velasco Gurrola, 40, and Emmanuel Velasco Gurrola, 29, are charged with three counts of conspiracy to commit murder and three counts of conspiracy to cause foreign travel for murder-for-hire.

The indictment was unsealed yesterday and a redacted version was released to the public. Although it does not list details of the investigation and the connections between the suspects and the victims, the Justice Department press release does.

The Justice Department said the family allegedly paid someone in between September and October 2008 to travel into Cuidad Juarez to commit multiple murders.

According to published reports, on Oct. 3, 2008, Francisco Maria Sagredo Villareal was murdered in his house in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, the Justice Department said.

On Nov. 20, 2008, Francisco’s daughter, Cinthia Sagredo Escobedo, was murdered in Ciudad Juarez. Two days later, while traveling to her sister Cinthia’s funeral, Ruth Sagredo Escobedo was ambushed and murdered.

Federal agents arrested Valencia and Samuel Velasco on Sept. 24 without incident. Emmanuel Velasco was already in custody on a separate federal indictment which charges Emmanuel, Samuel and others with various offenses, including drug and money laundering charges.

This indictment resulted from an investigation conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Homeland Security Investigations and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Daphne Newaz is prosecuting this case on behalf of the Government.