LAKE CHARLES, LA. —Late Tuesday, U.S. Border Patrol agents assigned to the Lake Charles Station, conducted a vehicle stop on a 2006 Chrysler Town and Country van on interstate-10 near Lake Charles, LA. The van was occupied with nine people.
Eight illegal aliens, who were passengers in the vehicle and had recently illegally crossed the U.S. border near Laredo, TX were arrested. The driver, a Honduran citizen, who entered the U.S. as a visitor was also arrested for alien smuggling.
The agents determined one of the eight to be, a 38-year-year-old male citizen of Honduras, and a Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) gang member who was previously convicted on the charges of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.
“Our goal is to enhance border security in the Gulf Coast Area in order to disrupt and degrade smuggling operations.” said Jonathan Richards, New Orleans Sector Chief. “These arrests serve as an example of the U.S. Border Patrol’s commitment to preventing potentially dangerous people from entering the country.”
The driver is in federal custody facing charges of alien smuggling and the vehicle was seized by the U.S. Border Patrol. The gang member is also in federal custody and is facing charges for reentering the U.S. as a previously deported foreign national.
To prevent the illicit smuggling of humans, drugs, and other contraband, the U.S. Border Patrol maintains a high level of vigilance on transportation routes in the Gulf Coast area. Help Protect our Homeland, report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol New Orleans Sector at 1-866-50-PROTECT.
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.