Tucson, Ariz. - Five deceased individuals were discovered in the Sonoran Desert yesterday by Tucson Sector Border Patrol, who also rescued 36 illegal aliens in distress.
A Tucson Sector Border Patrol Search, Trauma and Rescue team responded to a 911 call from Pima County Sheriff's Office regarding a group of 12 illegal aliens and one deceased individual - possibly due to dehydration. BORSTAR agents located and treated the survivors for heat related injuries. Tohono O'odham Police Department accepted custody of the deceased individual.
In a separate incident, Ajo Station agents responded to a call of a suspected illegal alien lying on the ground three miles north of Lukeville Port. Agents located a deceased body and turned the scene over to the Pima County Sheriff's Office.
Continuing a search from late Monday, Casa Grande agents discovered human remains of one individual in the West Desert. TOPD arrived on scene and took custody.
In separate incidents Tuesday, Casa Grande agents discovered the body of what appeared to be a deceased woman near San Miguel, Ariz. TOPD accepted custody of the body. Meanwhile, BORSTAR agents working with air assets from CBP's Office of Air and Marine located a group of 15 illegal aliens suffering from varying degrees of dehydration; three of which were severely dehydrated. BORSTAR agents treated the subjects before transferring them to the Casa Grande Station for processing. Agents on scene also discovered and followed foot prints near the apprehension site which led to a deceased body. TOPD was contacted and took custody of the scene.
Also on Tuesday, after a 911 call from illegal aliens in distress in the West Desert, Ajo Station agents located nine illegal aliens. BORSTAR agents conducted medical evaluations and treated three individuals for severe dehydration. The subjects were then transported to the Ajo Station for processing.
As temperatures rise, individuals attempting to cross the Sonoran Desert face extremely hazardous conditions. Smugglers continue to put lives in danger by leading them through the harsh desert terrain, often abandoning them when they are physically unable to continue. In addition, those who cross illegally face legal and administrative consequences.
Since launching the Southwest Border Initiative in March 2009, the Department of Homeland Security has made significant investments towards establishing a secure and safe border environment and improving the quality of life throughout Arizona communities.
The Border Patrol welcomes assistance from the community. Report suspicious activity by calling toll free (1-877) 872-7435. All calls will be answered and will remain anonymous.
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.