EL PASO, Texas – In the first two weeks of March, U.S. Border Patrol Agents in the El Paso Sector encountered more than 13 migrants with extensive criminal records and gang affiliations.
On the morning of March 3, Deming Station Border Patrol Agents encountered an individual from El Salvador, along with two other migrants, as part of a foiled a smuggling attempt, that occurred on NM State Road 26. The El Salvadorian individual was taken into custody where checks confirmed that the individual was a member of a known transnational criminal organization.
On March 8, agents assigned to the Las Cruces Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate-10 performed an immigration inspection on a commercial passenger bus. During the inspection, agents encountered a citizen of Guatemala, illegally present in the United States, where further investigation revealed that the individual had a conviction for Criminal Sexual Contact.
On March 11, a citizen of Honduras, illegally present in the United States, was encountered at the Las Cruces Interstate-25 checkpoint during an immigration inspection of a commercial passenger bus. Record checks and further questioning by agents revealed that the individual had an extensive criminal history and confirmed ties to a known Transnational Criminal Organization. The individual’s criminal convictions included Resisting Arrest to Aggravated Assault.
On March 14, agents assigned to the Ysleta station responded to a call to assist El Paso Police Department with a vehicle stop. Inside the vehicle, agents encountered a national of El Salvador illegally present in the United States. Records checks revealed the individual had a conviction for Rape, Sexual Assault and Forcible Compulsion.
The examples above are only a sampling of the persons with criminal histories or gang affiliations that El Paso has encountered in the past two weeks.
El Paso Sector continues to see migrants with extensive and significant criminal records attempting to enter our borders illegally. Backgrounds include assault, human trafficking, domestic violence, narcotics smuggling, and sexual offences. Since the beginning of the fiscal year 2022, agents have encountered more than 395 individuals with previous criminal records and gang affiliations.
“These arrests continue to highlight the dangers that Transnational Criminal Organizations pose by attempting to smuggle criminals into the United States. Dangerous criminals endanger our communities as they often continue to disregard the rule of law once in the United States,” said El Paso Sector Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez. “The number of significant arrests made in a short span of two weeks demonstrates the importance of our national security mission and the work El Paso Sector agents do every day.”
It is important to note that an arrest or criminal complaint is merely a charge and should not be considered evidence of guilt. Subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection welcomes assistance from the community. Citizens are encouraged to report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol while remaining anonymous by calling 1-800-635-2509