FORT FAIRFIELD, Maine – On the evening of January 4, U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested two Columbian men and two Vietnamese citizens for being in the United States illegally.
An area resident observed two hitchhikers near the international border with Canada and gave them a ride to the Fort Fairfield Police Station. The hitchhikers, a man (27) and a woman (24), did not speak English and appeared to have been walking in the snow. The Border Patrol was then notified and responded to assist.
“This situation could have resulted in serious injury or death of the two Vietnamese citizens had they not been located and brought out of the elements. Maine’s border areas are very remote and can be exceedingly dangerous to cross, especially during the winter months.” said Jason D. Owens, Chief Patrol Agent of the Border Patrol in Maine.
Responding Border Patrol agents spoke to the hitchhikers and identified them as Vietnamese citizens who had entered the United States illegally from Canada. Both subjects were cold and wet after walking through snow-covered terrain before finding a road. Border Patrol agents then attempted to identify the location of the illegal border crossing.
The investigation brought Border Patrol agents to a remote border area known for illegal border crossings. While in the area, agents observed a sedan traveling very slowly on a nearby road. As part of their investigation, agents conducted a vehicle stop on the sedan.
The vehicle stop resulted in the arrest of the driver (28), a citizen of Columbia, who entered the United States legally as a non-immigrant but had overstayed the duration of his visa. The passenger also a citizen of Columbia (32) had entered the Unites States illegally from Mexico in 2016. All of the subjects were transported to the Fort Fairfield Border Patrol Station for processing.
All subjects were placed into removal proceedings. Although many cases processed by the Border Patrol in Maine are handled administratively, underlying criminal charges are often present. Title 8 of the U.S. Code, Section 1325, makes it a crime to enter the United States illegally.
The Border Patrol in Maine relies on the cooperation and assistance of the public. Anyone wishing to make a confidential report of suspicious activity may do so by calling (800) 851-8727 to contact the U.S. Border Patrol in Maine.
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