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CBP arrests 39 undocumented aliens in Puerto Rico

Release Date: 
July 20, 2011

Aguadilla, Puerto Rico -U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents arrested 39 undocumented aliens from Cuba, Dominican Republic and Ecuador yesterday, found illegally in the United States territory in four separate events.

The total count of undocumented aliens arrested by Border Patrol are; 24 Cuban, 14 Dominican Republic and 1 Ecuadorian.

Early Monday morning the Ramey Border Patrol Station was notified by Park Rangers of the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources of an incursion of an estimated group of 12 aliens claiming to be Cuban nationals that arrived in the area of Punta Arenas on Mona Island, from the Dominican Republic.

Later in the day, the DNER Park Rangers informed of another incursion of 13 aliens claiming to be Cuban nationals.

Also that morning the Puerto Rico Police Department FURA station in Cabo Rojo contacted the Ramey Border Patrol Station indicating that they had observed approximately 6 aliens who made landfall near the area of El Salitral, which is located between the areas of El Combate, and Punta Aguila, Cabo Rojo.

Border Patrol Agents responded and searched the area locating 10 undocumented aliens claiming to be nationals of the Dominican Republic.

In the afternoon, the Border Patrol Agents detained 3 female undocumented aliens in the el Yunque area of the island during a US Forest Service operation.

The group of alleged 25 Cubans were transported by the US Coast Guard to the Mayaguez port of entry and transferred to the Border Patrol for immigration processing.

Border Patrol Agents interview and fingerprint all undocumented aliens to verify prior immigration encounters or potential criminal records.

Among the detained group of Cubans, Border Patrol Agents identified a national of the Dominican Republic.

After admissibility processing at the Border Patrol Station, the 24 Cuban nationals will be served a Notice to Appear (NTA) before an Immigration Judge, for further proceedings under the Cuban Migration Agreement of 1995 and the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966.

Aliens who have a prior immigration encounter could face criminal prosecution processed for entering at a place not designated by immigration officers'.

This case demonstrates the joint working effort by federal and territorial agencies on the island under the Caribbean Border Interagency Group (CBIG), to secure operational control against illegal aliens who attempt to penetrate U.S. borders.

About the Wet Foot, Dry Foot Policy

The wet foot, dry foot policy is the name given to a consequence of the 1995 revision of the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966. Since then, in what has become known as the "wet foot, dry foot" policy, a Cuban caught on the waters between the two nations (i.e., with "wet feet") would be sent to the place of embarkation. One who makes it to shore ("dry feet") might remain in the United States.

About the Caribbean Border Interagency Group (CBIG):

The concept of CBIG resulted from a March 2006 collaboration of local Homeland Security components that effectively stemmed the increased flow of traffic across the Mona Passage between the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. In July 2006, CBIG is organized of such agencies as U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rico Police Department's Joint Forces for Rapid Action (FURA, for its Spanish Acronym).

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021