Friday, August 14, 2009

Coffee shop manager serves jail time

Hailey man also suspected of being illegal immigrant

Express Staff Writer

Diogenes Jesus Francia-Rojas

A Ketchum coffee shop manager has served his 50 days in jail for a battery conviction but is still under suspicion of being in the United States illegally.

Diogenes Jesus Francia-Rojas, 31, a Peruvian native, is currently free on bail on a federal immigration charge.

Francia-Rojas, who managed Java on Fourth prior to his arrest in June, was released from the Blaine County jail on Aug. 3 after satisfying his jail sentence. He had pleaded guilty on July 1 to misdemeanor battery and was sentenced that same day by Blaine County Magistrate Court Judge R. Ted Israel. He was given credit for 47 days already spent behind bars. Israel also placed Francia-Rojas on 18 months supervised probation.

The guilty plea was in accord with a plea agreement with the Blaine County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, which originally charged Francia-Rojas with felony domestic battery for allegedly beating his girlfriend at his home in Hailey on June 14.

Francia-Rojas is also suspected of being an illegal immigrant. An immigration detainer was issued against him by the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency on June 15.

"His immigration case is still pending," ICE spokeswoman Lori Dankers said. "He will go before an immigration judge and the judge will determine whether he's eligible to remain in the United States. He's just not in custody until his court date."

Dankers was uncertain when Francia-Rojas is to appear before the judge. The bond amount was not immediately available.

Terry Smith:

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