Mayor Lee comments on SF homicide suspect

March 27, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Murder charges were filed late Tuesday against the man accused of killing five people inside a San Francisco home. The suspect was supposed to have been deported years ago, so this evening the mayor is calling for a nationwide overhaul of a key immigration law that prevented it.

For a fifth straight day, investigators returned to the crime scene to process evidence. Five people, four from the same family, were found murdered there Friday morning.

"It is a horrible tragedy. The family that was, I my opinion, I guess for lack of a better word, they were executed in some way. I know police are doing the best they can, they do have a suspect," said Mayor Ed Lee.

On Sunday, 35-year-old Binh Luc Thai was taken into custody for the killings. A neighbor shot video of a SWAT team moving in a his Western Addition apartment to make the arrest.

Immigration officials say he was supposed to be deported in 2006, after Luc served eight years of an 11-year sentence for robbing a Santa Clara restaurant. But the Vietnamese government failed to provide the required paperwork, so he was released.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, does have what's called "a hold" or detainer on him now, so no matter what happens in the murder case, they are in line to take custody of Luc.

Lee says there should be immigration reform to at least prevent ex-cons like Luc from returning to the community where they committed a crime.

"It wasn't anything that we could possibly do locally, but I do think it does pause us to make sure that we take a look at our national immigration reform and make sure we cover this aspect, especially when a country refuses to take back a citizen originating from that country," said Lee.

Luc is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday afternoon.


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