Border Patrol agents working in Arizona and California report that drug trafficking by illegal aliens has been very heavy in the first days before May. Yuma Sector agents arrested 43 illegal aliens and seized almost a ton of marijuana valued at approximately $1 million. Wellton Station Border Patrol agents arrested 58 illegal aliens and seized 1,225 pounds of marijuana. Two of these illegal aliens had been deported.
In the early hours of the weekend, Border Patrol agents patrolling the Sonoran Desert arrested seven Mexican nationals, and seized 235 pounds of marijuana. They had entered into the country illegally near Gila Bend in Maricopa County, Arizona. Agents also located more than 350 pounds of marijuana that had been abandoned.
The Sonoran Desert expands through the southwest portion of Arizona, the southeast part of California, and is in the Mexican state of Sonora.
In three separate busts near the Yuma Sector’s forward operating base, agents arrested more than thirty illegal aliens who were trying to traffick approximately 1,400 pounds of marijuana into the U.S.
Agents also stopped attempted smugglers at two of Yuma Sector’s immigration checkpoints. A U.S. citizen who had an active warrant out of Modesto, California for fraud, was trying to smuggle an illegal alien into the country. He was in Blythe, Calif, on Highway 78 when he was apprehended.
The second arrest was at the Interstate 8 checkpoint, east of Yuma, when a Mexican national was fraudulently using another person’s valid U.S. passport. The penalty for someone engaging in this crime subjects them to a sentence of up to three years in prison.
Wellton Station Border Patrol agents arrested 58 illegal aliens in the Sonoran Desert, including two who had previously been deported and were in violation of the terms of their supervised release. Wellton Station agents patrol 65 miles of the U.S. boundary with Mexico. They seized over 1,225 pounds of marijuana. Two of those arrested had previously been deported and had reentered the U.S. illegally while smuggling drugs.
The two that had illegally reentered the country after being deported were trafficking 218 pounds of marijuana into the U.S. Because they violated their conditions of release, they will go back to prison to complete their sentences.
Three other men were apprehended while hiding in the trunk of a car while attempting to go through the immigration checkpoint on Interstate 8. The men included two Mexican nationals and a Salvadoran. The driver was U.S. citizen. The American will be prosecuted for felony alien smuggling.
Of the 58 illegal aliens arrested, twenty-one of the men were caught smuggling 843 pounds of marijuana. Fourteen of the smugglers are Mexicans; four are Hondurans; two Salvadorans; and one Guatemalan. Agents in this sector also found 164 pounds of abandoned marijuana.