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  1. #1
    Moderator Beezer's Avatar
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    Travel agency owner charged with smuggling 100 into US

    Travel agency owner charged with smuggling 100 into US



    by: Julian Resendiz
    Posted: Mar 19, 2024 / 03:32 PM CDT
    Updated: Mar 19, 2024 / 03:32 PM CDT





    Woman allegedly worked with Mexican transnational criminal organizations to transport, house and deliver unauthorized migrants to border wall

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    EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – A travel agency operator accused of smuggling more than 100 Colombian nationals into the U.S. is facing a May 7 trial date.

    A federal grand jury in Arizona on March 6 charged Greiby Melissa Barcelo Velasquez with multiple counts of conspiracy and bringing illegal aliens to the United States for profit.

    Barcelo allegedly used her Baul Travel agency in Medellin, Colombia, to encourage and induce individuals to travel to the United States and petition for political asylum.

    In exchange, she charged thousands of dollars in fees, coached her clients, and placed them in the hands of Mexican transnational criminal organizations, according to a federal complaint.

    The cartels provided temporary housing, bus service, cabs and ultimately an armed escort that delivered Barcelo’s clients to the Papago Gate of the U.S. border wall in the Tohono O’odham Indian Reservation in Arizona, court documents allege.

    US mom, Juarez woman charged with running migrant stash house

    The U.S. Border Patrol and Homeland Security Investigations agents began to track Barcelo in late 2023 and took her into custody after she entered the U.S. on a tourist visa earlier this year.

    Barcelo appeared for arraignment in U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona on March 11. She pleaded not guilty to the charges, and the court set a May 7, 2024, trial date before U.S. District Judge John J. Tuchi, in Phoenix.

    A magistrate judge deemed Barcelo a flight risk and ordered her detained pending trial.

    The Colombia-Arizona migrant pipeline

    Border agents in Arizona last fall noticed an unprecedented increase in Colombian nationals surrendering to them at the Papago Gate.

    Several deemed ineligible to remain in the U.S. under Title 8 rules stated to the agents they had paid millions of Colombian pesos (thousands of U.S. dollars) to a travel agency operator in Medellin.

    Arrests of migrants with criminal records up 340%

    According to court documents, migrants including Melisa Vasco Rua, Marco Salazar Giraldo and Juliana Villa Cordoba stated they were flown from Colombia to airports in Mexico where Barcelo allegedly instructed them through the WhatsApp phone app which customs lane to go to and what to say to Mexican government officials so they would not be detained.

    The Colombians were approached outside the airports by cab drivers who took them to designated hotels and stash houses. Later, they were flown to Hermosillo in the border state of Sonora and bused to Sonoyta, across the border from Lukeville, Arizona. At each stop, the Colombians were expected to pay between $900 and $1,100 to their Mexican facilitators, court records show.

    The Colombians told investigators they were eventually placed in the custody of armed men who would take them in a pickup to the Papago Gate and told to surrender to the Border Patrol and claim asylum.

    In addition to the migrants’ testimony, border agents were able to view the WhatsApp chats on their cellphones – which documented conversations and voice messages with a woman they believed was Barcelo, according to the federal complaint.

    Visit the BorderReport.com homepage for the latest exclusive stories and breaking news about issues along the U.S.-Mexico border

    The Colombians told investigators they were headed to California, Houston, New Jersey and other U.S. destinations to either look for jobs or live with relatives.

    The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Phoenix on Monday said federal agents have identified more than 100 individuals who crossed the border utilizing Barcelo’s organization. The defendant is facing up to 10 years in prison and fines of $250,000 if convicted.



    https://www.borderreport.com/immigra...g-100-into-us/
    Last edited by Beezer; 03-20-2024 at 08:18 AM.
    ILLEGAL ALIENS HAVE "BROKEN" OUR IMMIGRATION SYSTEM

    DO NOT REWARD THEM - DEPORT THEM ALL

  2. #2
    Moderator Beezer's Avatar
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    Every person charged with human smuggling should be put in a chain gang on the border and clean up the feces, shoes, dirty diapers, clothes, plastic bottles and garbage as their sentence.

    Make them clean it up then deport them.
    ILLEGAL ALIENS HAVE "BROKEN" OUR IMMIGRATION SYSTEM

    DO NOT REWARD THEM - DEPORT THEM ALL

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