Encinitas, Calif. - Early this morning, after a recent string of maritime smuggling incidents, U.S. Border Patrol agents, in conjunction with CBP Office of Air and Marine agents arrested eight Mexican nationals after they illegally entered the country aboard a boat along the San Diego County coastline.
At about 1:30 a.m., Border Patrol agents spotted a panga-style boat as it approached the coastline near Swami's Beach in Encinitas, Calif. Agents observed the boat come ashore and saw eight people disembark from the vessel. Agents quickly apprehended the individuals, who all admitted being Mexican nationals illegally in the United States.
The individuals, seven adult males and one adult female, were arrested and transported to the Imperial Beach Border Patrol Station for processing. The vessel was seized by CBP Office of Air and Marine. The smuggling case was turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for further investigation.
This is the fifth maritime smuggling attempt stopped by CBP within the past six days. Wednesday, Border Patrol agents arrested 23 suspected illegal aliens at Marine Beach on Camp Pendleton. On April 9, Border Patrol agents apprehended 11 Mexican nationals near the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. Over the weekend, agents apprehended five Mexican nationals and arrested one U.S citizen for suspected smuggling near Mission Bay, and CBP Marine Interdiction agents intercepted a 24-foot boat and apprehended eight Mexican nationals near Ocean Beach, California.
CBP agents maintain a strong enforcement posture on the coastal borders to detect, apprehend and deter smugglers of humans, drugs and other contraband.
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.