by Andrew Michalscheck
Posted on April 17, 2013 at 2:58 PM

PHOENIX -- Seven people were booked into jail and two others were turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement after detectives with the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Human Smuggling Unit investigated an SUV this week.

MCSO said detectives came across a Lincoln Navigator on Tuesday and determined that the nine people inside were part of a human smuggling load.

According to MCSO, all but one of the passengers identified themselves as Mexican nationals. They had reportedly paid as much as $3,000 to be illegally brought to the United States.

Seven of the passengers were booked into the 4th Avenue Jail on human smuggling charges.

Those arrested included Mario Vasquez-Martinez, 33; Carlos Carbrera-Moreno, 36; Adelfo Mejia-Marquillo, 37; Miguel Tome-Rosas, 32; Jose Perez-Petlateco, 19, Everardo Ocotlan-Bolanos, 45; and Ricardo Barrios-Lopez, 25, who was the alleged driver.

“During the past few weeks, my detectives have arrested and booked into the 4th Avenue Jail 36 suspects in connection with felony human smuggling violations,” said Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. “We will continue to aggressively enforce these and all state laws.”