BROWNSVILLE, Texas — A police officer from this border city is expected to be released on bond following her arrest on federal human smuggling charges for allegedly trying to get her boyfriend past an immigration checkpoint.
Brownsville Police Officer Valerie Rivas has been in federal custody since her February 26 arrest near the Padre Island National Seashore when she was arrested allegedly with illegal immigrants. Court documents obtained by Breitbart Texas revealed that Rivas reportedly arranged for Alfredo Salazar Hernandez, her boyfriend of 12 years, to be smuggled from Brownsville to Victoria, Texas on February 24. Salazar is an illegal immigrant from Tabasco, Mexico. This week, a federal magistrate judge set bond for Rivas at $20,000.
Rivas was reportedly on duty during the smuggling operation. When Salazar failed to check in and did not arrive at the expected destination, she contacted the human smuggling group and learned that the individuals tasked with picking them up had been arrested. Rivas drove out to the beach in an area that is north of the U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint in Sarita and began to search for her boyfriend. Federal authorities allegedly caught her and another illegal immigrant as they were trekking along the dunes.
Rivas’ boyfriend was one of seven illegal immigrants that were to be smuggled north to Victoria, however, the group became separated. Salazar was captured by authorities in the morning of February 26, several hours before Rivas was arrested.
Ildefonso Ortiz is an award-winning journalist with Breitbart Texas. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Brandon Darby and Stephen K. Bannon. You can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook. He can be contacted at Iortiz@breitbart.com.
Brandon Darby is managing director and editor-in-chief of Breitbart Texas. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Ildefonso Ortiz and Stephen K. Bannon. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.