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CBP Field Operations at Hidalgo International Bridge Arrests Female Smugglers

Release Date: 
November 14, 2019

HIDALGO, Texas—U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations (OFO) at the Hidalgo International Bridge arrested two women in connection with a failed attempt to smuggle a 16-year-old girl from Mexico.

“This was a good referral on the part of the primary officer who made the decision to have this traveler’s identity verified further,” said Port Director Carlos Rodriguez, Port of Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas. “Alien smuggling is a serious offense and CBP will file federal charges against those involved in these activities.”

A CBP officer conducts a primary inspection at Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry
A CBP officer conducts a primary inspection
at Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry.

The incident occurred on Nov. 12, 2019 at the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge when a CBP officer encountered three young women claiming to be United States citizens aboard a gray Saturn Vue. After checking the U.S. birth certificates they presented, the officer referred the women to secondary for further inspection of the 16-year-old female traveler. A secondary inspection revealed that the youngest passenger was not U.S. citizen but in fact a citizen of Mexico without valid documents to legally enter or reside in the United States. Officers also discovered that the birth certificate and social security card she used did not belong to her.

CBP OFO seized the vehicle and arrested the two adult women, who were presented before a federal U.S. magistrate on charges of alleged violation of U.S. immigration law. The minor Mexican female traveler was released to a parent and both returned to Mexico.

Visit CBP’s website for more information on the Immigration Inspection Program

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021