HIDALGO, Texas—U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations (OFO) at the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge arrested a woman from Mission, Texas after an alleged failed attempt to smuggle a seven-year-old child.
“Human smuggling, especially of minors is a serious violation of U.S. immigration law for which CBP has no tolerance,” said Acting Port Director Javier Cantu, Hidalgo/Pharr/ Anzalduas Port of Entry. “Immigration law violators face prosecution to the fullest extent allowed by law.”
On July 16, CBP officers working at the pedestrian lanes of the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge encountered an 18-year-old female United States citizen accompanied by her alleged seven-year-old sister. The woman presented a State of Texas issued identification card along with a U.S. birth certificate for herself and for the minor girl. A CBP officer referred them both into secondary for further inspection and document review and it was there that officers discovered that the minor was not related to the adult female. Officers further discovered that the minor was a Mexican citizen without valid documents to legally enter or reside in the United States.
The adult female was incarcerated pending appearance before a U.S. federal magistrate on criminal charges for alleged violation of U.S. immigration law. The minor child was released to a U.S. Health and Human Services-Office of Refugee Resettlement facility where she will be temporarily housed.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.