SAN DIEGO – Jose Emiliano Aguilar, the son of Mexican-American singer and actor Pepe Aguilar, was sentenced in court Tuesday to three years probation for trying to smuggle migrants into the US from Mexico.
Upon handing down the sentence, Federal Judge Anthony J. Battaglia took into consideration that the son of the popular performer had been in rehabilitation since his arrest, given that he suffers from “depression” and drug use.
During the hearing, which took place in federal court in San Diego, the younger Aguilar was accompanied by his family, including his mother and father.
The 24-year-old told the court that he was a good person but made a bad decision before learning the sentence for trying to bring four Chinese citizens into the US illegally in the trunk of his car.
The judge urged the young man to “be careful,” and to remain healthy and sober, as well as to take into consideration all the people he harmed with his bad decision.
The sentence imposed on Aguilar includes six months in rehabilitation at a sober living facility.
Prosecutors, meanwhile, had asked that the judge take into account in passing sentence that Aguilar had committed a serious crime, given that the method by which he tried to smuggle the four migrants into the country was “inhumane.”
Aguilar embraced his attorney and relatives after hearing the sentence and left court without speaking to the media.
His father, however – who has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and has won four Grammys and four Latin Grammys – said he was happy with the judge’s decision and acknowledging that the family has a responsibility to help him “as much as we can.”
The younger Aguilar was arrested on March 14 at the San Ysidro border crossing point between San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico, when the four foreigners – who testified that they had agreed to pay between $3,000 and $60,000 if they were able to get into the US – were found in his vehicle.