US Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Lori Haley said Avtar Singh, who killed his wife, two children and himself in their home, was arrested by investigators for unlawful presence in July 2007.
Haley said Singh was later released and placed in removal proceedings. She said at the time of his death, the investigation was continuing.
Haley did not say whether US officials knew of Singh's alleged crimes in India.
Singh was sought with an Interpol notice for the 1996 killing of a human rights lawyer in Kashmir.
Fresno: Federal immigration officials say the former Indian army officer who was wanted for murder in his homeland and killed his family in California on Saturday had been living illegally in the US for at least five years.
First Published: Wednesday, June 13, 2012, 17:21