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Jose Ines Garcia Zarate
FILE - In this July 7, 2015 file photo, Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, right, is led into the courtroom by San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi, left, and Assistant District Attorney Diana Garciaor, center, for his arraignment at the Hall of Justice in San Francisco. San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon, Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017, defended the handling of the murder trial that ended with the acquittal of Garcia Zarate, whose arrest set off a fierce national debate on immigration. (Michael Macor/San Francisco Chronicle via AP, Pool, File)

The undocumented immigrant acquitted in Kate Steinle's death is now facing federal charges


The undocumented immigrant who was recently acquitted of murder and manslaughter charges stemming from the death of Kate Steinle will face new charges, according to NPR.

NPR on Tuesday reported that a federal grand jury has indicted Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, a Mexican national, on new gun and immigration charges.

Zarate has been indicted on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition and for being an illegally present alien in possession of a firearm.

Each violation carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison, and they apparently signal that federal authorities hope to try, convict and incarcerate Zarate.

RELATED: Trump called the not guilty verdict in the Kate Steinle case a 'complete travesty'

A jury for the Superior Court of San Francisco last week acquitted Zarate, 45, of the most serious charges related to Steinle’s death in 2015.

Jurors acquitted Zarate of first-degree murder, second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter and assault with a firearm related to the incident.

Zarate was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm, a conviction that carries a maximum punishment of three years in prison.

The undocumented immigrant’s defense attorneys have vowed, however, that they will appeal that conviction.

The day after the trial’s conclusion last week, federal authorities said that they would try gaining custody of Zarate and eventually deporting him.

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Prosecutors argued during the trial that Zarate meant to shoot and kill Steinle, 32, while she was walking along a San Francisco pier two years ago.

Zarate’s defense countered that the single shot which killed Steinle accidentally struck her in the back after ricocheting off the ground.

President Trump last Saturday tweeted that the trial’s outcome was a “total miscarriage of Justice.”

Trump has long cited Steinle’s death as justification for stricter treatment of illegal immigration and so-called “sanctuary cities.”

Sanctuary policies are those that limit the amount of cooperation between local jurisdictions and federal immigration enforcement authorities.

Zarate’s case sparked fierce national debate over the matter as he had been deported five times before Steinle’s death.

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