EL CENTRO, Calif. – El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents arrested two suspected smugglers who illegally brought 14 undocumented immigrants into the country in a tandem vehicle incursion Friday morning.
The arrest occurred at approximately 7:15 a.m., after agents observed two vehicles, a Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) and a pick-up truck, drive through the international border around 14 miles west of the Calexico Port of Entry.
Agents observed the vehicles travel north bound across the desert until the vehicles headed east bound on Highway 98. Agents responded and conducted vehicle stops on the highway.
Agents determined that the driver of the SUV, a 31-year-old Mexican national, had eight Mexican national passengers, who had no legal authority to be in the country. The driver of the pick-up truck, a 23-year-old Mexican national, had six Mexican national passengers. Agents took all 16 people into custody.
“Vehicle incursions into the United States are unacceptable and will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez. “The unknown threats of not knowing who or what is being brought into this country via vehicle without inspection is intolerable. I commend our Border Patrol agents for thwarting this smuggling attempt.”
Border Patrol agents transported the Mexican nationals to the Calexico Border Patrol Station for further investigation and processing. Agents seized both vehicles.
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 official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.