GREAT FALLS – A Mexican citizen arrested in Glacier National Park was sentenced on Tuesday to six months in prison and to two years of supervised release after being convicted of being in the United States illegally, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.
Luis Alejandro Lopez-Solis, 38, pleaded guilty in December to illegal re-entry. While on a routine patrol of the Goat Haunt area in Glacier National Park on September 24, 2018, park personnel told St. Mary Border Patrol agents of a suspicious person walking south from the Goat Haunt Ranger Station area.
Border Patrol agents searched and found Lopez-Solis talking to a park law enforcement ranger on a trail south of the ranger station. Lopez-Solis was taken to the ranger station for an interview. Lopez-Solis, who was in wet clothing and shivering, said he had fallen into a nearby creek while trying to cross it.
Agents arrested Lopez-Solis and flew him by helicopter from the ranger station to the St. Mary Border Patrol Station for further investigation. He confirmed he was a citizen of Mexico.
Lopez-Solis told agents he left Mexico on Sept. 21, 2018, and had arrived the same day in Canada. There, he rented a car and traveled to Waterton, Alberta, where on Sept. 24 he started walking south, crossing into the United States, until he got found by the National Park Service rangers.
He said his plan was to follow the NPS trail system to Chief Mountain where his girlfriend was going to pick him up.
Lopez-Solis was deported in May 2017 after conviction on passport fraud. He did not have permission to reenter the United States.