YUMA, Ariz. – El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents arrested five United States citizens, a Mexican citizen in possession of a Border Crossing Card, 14 undocumented individuals, and seized a stash of weapons, Monday evening.
The incident occurred at approximately 6:10 p.m., when El Centro Border Patrol Sector Intelligence Unit (SIU) agents observed a 2007 Chevrolet Tahoe exhibiting signs consistent with human smuggling, traveling through a subdivision in Yuma, AZ. Agents noticed the vehicle stopped momentarily in an industrial rail yard, an area known to be used by undocumented individuals to board commercial freight trains, preventing from any type of detection to further travel north into the interior of the U.S. Agents lost visual of the vehicle but a brief search of the immediate area, 13 undocumented individuals were found near the train tracks.
Agents were able to locate the vehicle and, attempted to stop the vehicle, the driver failed to yield fleeing the scene, at this time agents ended the pursuit. At approximately 7:20 p.m., agents confirmed that the vehicle returned to a house associated with human smuggling in the area where it was first suspected. While at that location, agents noticed four individuals exit the residence and walk towards a Honda Accord. To prevent the individuals from leaving the property, agents identified themselves and detained them for further questioning. Through interview it was determined that all four individuals were U.S. citizens with one of them being a tenant of the property.
With consent, Border Patrol’s Special Operations Detachment and SIU inspected the residence. During the inspection, agents discovered an additional three individuals inside the house: a U.S. citizen, a Mexican citizen with a Border Crossing Card and one undocumented individual.
Agents also discovered and seized multiple semi-automatic weapons that included, an AK-47, two semi-automatic AR-15 rifles, a 12-gauge pump action shotgun, a Glock Pistol conversion kit, several magazines, and ammunition inside the house.
All individuals were arrested and transported to the Calexico Border Patrol Station to be processed accordingly.
The vehicle, weapons, and all contraband were seized as per El Centro Sector guidelines.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the comprehensive management, control, and protection of our nation’s borders, combining customs, immigration, border security, and agricultural protection at and between official ports of entry.