Migrants facing squatting and weapons charges

BRONX, NY – Eight migrants, discovered in a Bronx apartment basement, are now facing charges related to drugs and weapons. Authorities were alerted to the situation after a report of a gun display in the vicinity of the apartment on Wednesday evening.

Upon arrival at the Hull Avenue apartment, police witnessed a man brandishing a firearm at another individual. The man, later identified as Hector Desousa-Villalta, 24, from Venezuela, fled into the basement of the building as officers approached. Desousa-Villalta, previously arrested for attempted murder, was apprehended after a brief pursuit.

Simultaneously, another man, Javier Alborno, 22, also from Venezuela, attempted to exit the basement with a concealed handgun. Officers spotted and arrested Alborno, who was previously indicted for possession of a loaded firearm.

A subsequent search of the basement revealed additional firearms, including a “ghost gun” and three extended magazines, a significant quantity of controlled substances, and a 7-year-old child of unidentified parentage.

The group of migrants, largely from South America, had been living in the apartment without permission. The property, filled with discarded items and a partially filled inflatable pool, had been the subject of an eviction notice in October after the lease term ended.

Eight individuals, including Yoessy Pino Castillo, 20, were arrested in connection with the incident. The others detained were Yerbin Lozado-Munoz, 25, Yojairo Martinez, 42, Miquel Vaamondes-Barrios, 31, Jefferson Orlando Abreau, 39, and Johan Cardenas Silva, 35. All were charged with criminal possession of a weapon, criminal possession of a controlled substance, and acting in a manner injurious to a child.

Desousa-Villalta, who was seen with a firearm at the scene, was released without bail, despite the prosecutor’s request for a $150,000 bail. Alborno remains in custody, while Vaamondes-Barrios, wanted for retail theft and shoplifting in New York and Pennsylvania, is also being held. The remaining six individuals were released without bail.