TUCSON, Ariz. – Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents working at an immigration checkpoint discovered three Mexican nationals, two of them locked in the trunk of a vehicle and with no knowledge of the escape release latch.
When agents stopped a 2009 Hyundai to question the driver and three passengers at an immigration checkpoint near Casa Grande, Arizona, on Nov. 22, a Border Patrol canine alerted to the vehicle’s trunk. Agents directed the driver to a secondary inspection area and, during questioning, learned that one passenger was a Mexican national illegally present in the United States. Agents directed the occupants to exit the vehicle, and then used the canine for another check. The canine again alerted to the trunk.
An agent lowered the vehicle’s back seats and saw two people locked in the trunk. Agents determined that both individuals were also Mexican nationals illegally present in the U.S.
Later that evening, agents working at the immigration checkpoint on Interstate 19 selected a 2002 GMC with four occupants for further inspection and determined that two of the passengers did not match their photo identification. After questioning, both passengers admitted to being in the country illegally.
Agents arrested all U.S. citizens involved on smuggling charges, while the Mexican nationals in both incidents are being processed for removal.
Federal law allows the Border Patrol to charge individuals by complaint, a method that allows the filing of charges for criminal activity without inferring guilt. An individual is presumed innocent unless and until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Customs and Border Protection welcomes assistance from the community. Citizens can report suspicious activity to the Border Patrol by calling 1-877-872-7435 toll free. All calls will be answered and 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.