AROOSTOOK COUNTY, Maine – In a busy weekend, U.S. Border Patrol Agents arrested seven subjects and detained one more during three separate events in Northern Maine. Six of those arrested were Romanians caught illegally crossing the border in Hodgdon. In a different incident, one Canadian was arrested in Limestone for illegal entry and possession of a controlled substance. And, in third event a U.S. Citizen was detained and fined for illegal re-entry into the United States and avoiding inspection after docking on the Canadian side of East Grand Lake, near Orient.
On Saturday, September 12, at approximately 11:30 a.m., Border Patrol Dispatch alerted agents about a gray minivan that illegally entered into the United States from Canada, near Union Corner in Hodgdon. Border Patrol agents encountered the minivan a short distance from the border and conducted a vehicle stop where all occupants admitted to illegally entering the United States from Canada. All six Romanian Nationals were arrested for illegal entry and expelled to Canada under Title 42 USC 265. Two of the six arrested had previously been deported from the United States in 2017.
On September 12, a Border Patrol Agent observed a person who appeared to have entered the United States by avoiding the Gillespie Port of Entry. During questioning the man told the agent that he was a U.S. Citizen, however, subsequent records checks revealed he was born in France and acquired Canadian Citizenship. The individual admitted to being illegally present in the United States and was placed under arrest for illegal entry. A search subsequent to arrest revealed a small amount of Marijuana and six syringes of cannabis oil that later tested positive for Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The Canadian Citizen was expelled to Canada under Title 42 USC 265.
“We are responsible for 611 miles of land border in Maine. The ability of our agents to use the limited resources available to the best of their capabilities is instrumental in maintaining operational control and security of that border. The vigilance of our agents and the ability to leverage technology to assist them enables us to meet cross-border threats head on, bringing them to a rapid conclusion and maintaining a safer Maine and America” said Dennis Harmon, Acting Deputy Chief Patrol Agent, Houlton Sector.
In a third incident on Saturday, September 12, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) contacted U.S. Border Patrol seeking assistance with an ongoing smuggling attempt on East Grand Lake near Orient. RCMP observed a small vessel from the United States illegally docked on the Canadian side of East Grand Lake. While docked in Canada a person boarded the vessel before it traveled back toward the United States. U.S. Border Patrol agents aboard a 25 foot vessel located suspect’s vessel on the Canadian side of the lake. The suspect vessel was met by the RCMP, who detained the suspects along with the vessel. Upon re-entering the United States the suspect was interviewed by Border Patrol Agents who determined him to be a U.S. Citizen through records checks. The vessel and its owner were released with a fine for failure to report an arriving vessel.
“The border between the United States and Canada remains closed to non-essential traffic. Violators can be fined up to $5,000 dollars for the first offence and $10,000 for each subsequent offence” said Dennis Harmon, Acting Deputy Chief Patrol Agent of Houlton Sector.
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 call (800) 851-8727 to contact the United States Border Patrol in Maine or download the “USBP Maine” mobile app for free from Google Play or the Apple Store.