Hidalgo, Texas - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the Hidalgo International Bridge intercepted two women for allegedly attempting to smuggle four Mexican national children into the United States earlier this week.
On May 3, CBP officers working at the Hidalgo International Bridge came in contact with a northbound 27-year-old Mexican citizen from San Juan, Texas. The traveler, driving a 2001 Nissan Altima sedan was accompanied by 25-year-old female, U.S. citizen from Edinburg, Texas, and four minor children, two boys and two girls, ranging in age from less than one year to six years. The women each identified themselves as the mothers of two of the children and presented birth certificates that identified the children as U.S. citizens. The two adults, the children and vehicle were referred for further inspection. During secondary inspection, CBP officers established that the children were Mexican citizens and that the birth certificates had been issued to other U.S. citizen children.
In coordination with Mexican Immigration authorities, the children were released to their mother and all were returned to Mexico.
CBP officers have detained both women on alleged violations of immigration law and continue to investigate this thwarted smuggling attempt.
Hector A. Mancha, CBP port director Hidalgo-Pharr said, "I commend our frontline officers for their roles in intercepting and preventing this alleged child smuggling attempt." Mancha further said, "The safety of the children is paramount and we are glad that they have been reunited with their mother and all are safe."
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.