Hidalgo, TX- U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the Hidalgo/Reynosa International Bridge arrested a female U.S. citizen from Nacogdoches, Texas for allegedly attempting to smuggle a three-year-old Mexican national into the United States.
On October 15, 2011 CBP Officers working at the Hidalgo International Bridge came in contact with a northbound 1999 Toyota Camry and its occupants, a female U.S. citizen, age 25, from Nacogdoches, Texas and a small female child. A CBP officer referred the vehicle and driver to secondary for further inspection. In secondary, the adult female allegedly presented a U.S. birth certificate for herself and the child. CBP officers later established that there was no relationship between the two females and that the child was in fact a Mexican national with no valid documents to enter or reside in the U.S.
Pending appearance before a U.S. Federal Magistrate on criminal violations of U.S. immigration law, the female traveler remains incarcerated. CBP turned the child over to ICE for transport to a U.S. Health and Human Services Office of Refugee Resettlement facility.
"Due to our officer's diligence and attention to detail, this alleged smuggling attempt was disrupted," said Port Director Efrain Solis Jr. "The safety and well being of children is of paramount importance to CBP."
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.