Del Rio Sector Border Patrol agents arrested 11 human smugglers in 10 different incidents over the past weekend. The interdictions led to the apprehension of 33 migrants.
Eagle Pass Station agents stopped a Toyota 4Runner near Quemado, Texas, Friday. The agents carried out an immigration interview where they learned the driver was a Mexican national who was illegally in the U.S., according to information provided by Del Rio Sector Border Patrol officials. The 34-year-old driver had five Ecuadorian nationals in the vehicle with him. He was attempting to smuggle them into the U.S. interior, officials stated.
Of these ten smuggling attempts, two failed to yield for our agents endangering innocent bystanders and travelers. This is yet another example of the complete disregard smugglers have for public safety and human life. #USBP https://t.co/HyZIztmTBh pic.twitter.com/FCLMiSZ9Bm
— Chief Patrol Agent Raul L. Ortiz (@USBPChiefDRT) January 28, 2020
The following day, Uvalde Station agents assisted a Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office deputy during a traffic stop. When agents arrived, they found the deputy talking to the occupants of a 2002 GMC Yukon. Border Patrol agents carried out an immigration interview and determined the driver to be a 42-year-old U.S. citizen. Agents found seven illegal aliens in the vehicle. Officials did not disclose the nationality of the seven migrants. The driver reportedly has two previous convictions for driving with an invalid license, officials stated.
In eight other incidents, Del Rio Sector agents arrested nine more smugglers and apprehended 21 illegal immigrants being smuggled into the U.S. interior. Officials report the migrants came from China, Guatemala, and Mexico.
Sector officials stated the 11 alleged human smugglers now face federal prosecution. If convicted on the human smuggling charges, each could face up to 10 years in federal prison. The migrants will be processed according to CBP guidelines.
Del Rio Sector Chief Raul Ortiz tweeted that two of the smuggling incidents resulted in pursuits that endanger the public on the roadways. “This is yet another example of the complete disregard smugglers have for public safety and human life,” Chief Ortiz stated.
On Wednesday, Border Patrol officials announced that Chief Ortiz has been promoted to Deputy Chief fo the U.S. Border Patrol.
“I cannot tell you how honored I am to have been selected for such an important post in the U.S. Border Patrol at a critical time in our agency’s history,” Chief Ortiz said in a written statement. “This position allows me the ability to share a frontline operator’s border security perspective with the Administration, Congress, and our many homeland security stakeholders. But more importantly, it gives me an opportunity to directly support the almost 20,000 men and women of the United States Border Patrol.”