YUMA, Ariz. – Yuma Sector Border Patrol agents apprehended a gang member belonging to the Mara Salvatrucha-13 Gang, along with 60 other subjects, after they illegally crossed into the United States Monday.
At approximately 12:05 p.m. Monday, Yuma Station agents arrested a male 18-year-old El Salvadoran national and 60 other subjects all whom voluntarily surrendered to agents after the group illegally entered the United States east of the San Luis, Arizona Port of Entry. All 61 subjects were transported to the Yuma Station for processing.
Agents identified the El Salvadorian man as Herberth Geovani Argueta-Chavez. During initial interviews, he falsely claimed to be an unaccompanied juvenile in hopes of being released. Agents continued questioning Argueta-Chavez and confirmed that he was in fact an adult. He also admitted to being a member of MS-13, although he claimed he was trying to separate from the gang. Arguenta-Chavez stated that his intentions in crossing were to get to Los Angeles, California.
Argueta-Chavez and the and the 60 other migrants, comprised of one Mexican national and 59 Guatemalan nationals, are being processed for immigration violations.
Federal law allows agents to charge individuals by complaint, a method that allows for the filing of criminal activity charges without inferring guilt. An individual is presumed innocent unless or until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Yuma Sector Border Patrol agents effectively combat smuggling organizations attempting to illegally transport people and contraband through southwestern Arizona and California. Citizens can help the Border Patrol and U.S. Customs and Border Protection by calling 1-866-999-8727 toll-free to report suspicious activity. Callers can 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.