MINNEAPOLIS — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Saint Paul removed an unlawfully present foreign fugitive and former member of both the National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) and the Liberian National Police Special Operations Division (LNPSOD) from the United States, June 1, 2022.
Eddie Yenner Murphy Karpoleh was flown from Saint Paul to Liberia on a flight coordinated by ICE’s Air Operations Unit. Upon arrival, the fugitive was turned over to Liberian officials.
On Oct. 14, 2008, Karpoleh legally entered the U.S. to appear as a defense witness in the criminal trial of Roy Belfast Jr., aka “Chuckie” Taylor, the first U.S. criminal torture prosecution. Karpoleh absconded without testifying and was designated an ICE fugitive.
An investigation led by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Philadelphia, with assistance from the ICE’s Office of Principal Legal Advisor and Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center (HRVWCC), revealed that Karpoleh had been a former fighter in the NPFL, which was infamous for forcing children to kill and torture. Karpoleh was later a commander in LNPSOD, a unit known as “Sons of the Devil” for its brutality to local villagers. As a leader in these armed groups, Karpoleh was implicated in incidents of murder and sexual assault during Liberia’s two civil wars.
On Aug. 19, 2013, an immigration judge ordered Karpoleh removed. Between Nov. 24, 2014, and March 23, 2022, Karpoleh remained on an order of supervision while complying with reporting instructions, pending additional immigration applications.
On March 23, 2022, ERO St. Paul revoked Karpoleh’s order of supervision and on April 19, 2022, ERO Des Moines officers arrested Karpoleh during a targeted enforcement operation.
The HRVWCC is the only government entity focused completely on investigating global atrocities and the perpetrators of human rights violations and war crimes. Initiated by HSI in 2008, the HRVWCC leverages the knowledge and expertise of a select group of special agents, attorneys, intelligence analysts, criminal research specialists, and historians who are charged with preventing the United States from becoming a safe haven for individuals who engage in the commission of war crimes, genocide, torture and other forms of serious human rights abuses from conflicts around the globe.