El Paso, Texas - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the El Paso port of entry identify and stop imposters who attempt to enter the country illegally every day. On Wednesday this enforcement activity took a turn to the unusual when they encountered imposter family units on three separate occasions.
"CBP officers performing primary inspections were thorough and focused and were able to identify these pedestrians as persons who needed additional scrutiny," said Barry Miller, CBP Assistant Port Director El Paso, Texas. "Those extra checks quickly revealed that these applicants for admission were not the same people as those on the immigration documents they presented."
On two occasions Wednesday CBP officers working at the Bridge of the Americas pedestrian area intercepted married couples who were each traveling with a child. In each case the applicants presented legitimate I-551 Permanent Resident Cards to the primary officers. CBP officers selected the travelers for a more intensive examination after noting discrepancies during the initial inspection. CBP officers determined that all six individuals were imposters who had purchased the documents from unknown individuals in Mexico.
The third case occurred at the Paso Del Norte pedestrian area. A married couple applied for admission by presenting legitimate I-551 Permanent Resident Cards to the primary officers. CBP officers selected them for a more intensive examination after noting discrepancies during the initial inspection. CBP officers determined that all six individuals were imposters who had purchased the documents from unknown individuals in Mexico.
CBP enforcement officers presented the case to the U.S. Attorney for prosecution. The USA accepted prosecution on the couple that was apprehended at the Paso Del Norte crossing. Federal charges were also brought against the adult males involved in the two Bridge of the Americas cases. Four people were booked into the El Paso County Jail and are currently being held without bond. The two females who were traveling with children were a returned to Mexico.
In addition to the immigration cases, CBP officers confiscated 106.11 pounds of marijuana and 6.1 grams of amphetamines in three separate busts. CBP officers working at area ports took three people into custody who were being sought on outstanding warrants and lookouts to include failure to appear and a fugitive from justice.
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.