Border Patrol Halts Human Smuggling Attempt, Arrests 15

(Friday, November 23, 2012)

Salton City, Calif. — Border Patrol agents assigned to the Indio, Calif. station stopped a tractor trailer with 14 people inside and arrested one suspected alien smuggler at the Highway 86 checkpoint located between Westmorland and Salton City, Calif.

The incident occurred at around 1:30 p.m., after a Border Patrol canine team alerted to an orange 2001 Freightliner tractor trailer. The vehicle was referred to secondary for further inspection. Inside the trailer, agents discovered 13 men and 1 woman that were citizens of Mexico and later determined to be in the United States illegally. Agents also discovered 2.5 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $5,800.

The operator of the tractor, a 28-year-old U.S citizen, was placed under arrest on suspicion of alien smuggling. The 14 undocumented aliens were also arrested.

The suspect and illegal aliens are in U.S. Border Patrol custody pending further investigation. U.S. Border Patrol seized both the marijuana and vehicle involved in the incident.

The El Centro Sector’s Community Awareness Campaign is a simple and effective program to raise public awareness on the indicators of crime and other threats. We encourage public and private sector employees to remain vigilant and play a key role in keeping our country safe. Please report any suspicious activity to the Border Community Threat Hotline at (800) 901-2003.

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.