EL PASO, Texas – U.S. Border Patrol Agents in the El Paso sector in the last seven days have encountered numerous migrants with criminal records and gang affiliations.
The El Paso Sector continues to see migrants with criminal records attempting to enter our borders with different criminal backgrounds that include assault, burglary, driving under the influence, homicide, illegal drug possession, illegal weapon possession and sexual offenses.
Since the beginning of the fiscal year 2022, agents have encountered more than 244 migrants with previous criminal records.
The first incident, within the last week, occurred early morning on Jan. 25, when agents assigned to the Santa Teresa Border Patrol Station arrested an individual attempting to enter the United States illegally. Criminal record checks indicated that the El Salvador national is affiliated with a notorious criminal gang and was removed on two prior occasions.
A few hours later, in Deming, New Mexico, another individual was encountered west of the Columbus Port of Entry. Criminal records indicated that this individual had extensive criminal history in San Jose, California. Criminal convictions include charges of sexual battery, DUI causing bodily injury, hit and run and DUI with priors.
In a separate incident east of the Columbus Port of Entry, Border Patrol Agents, also assigned to the Deming Station, encountered a Mexican national in a remote desert area. The individual was convicted and sentenced in 2013 in California for possession of a control substance for sale.
That evening, an aggravated felon with a confirmed gang affiliation history was arrested thanks to the rapid response by Border Patrol Agents in Santa Teresa. The felon was part of a group of two migrants encountered illegally into the United States. The previously removed individual had convictions for unlawful transport of firearms, felon in possession of a firearm, and receiving stolen property.
On Jan. 26, another aggravated felon was encountered near Columbus, New Mexico, by Border Patrol Agents in Deming. Record checks indicated an extensive criminal history and a removal from the United States after a two-year prison sentence in Los Angeles, California.
All five individuals will face charges under 8 USC 1326 Re-entry of a Removed Alien.
Over the weekend, Ysleta Border Patrol Agents encountered a migrant with criminal records in a foreign country and another migrant with a murder charge out of Los Angeles, California. These two migrants were encountered together, just east of the Zaragoza International Port of Entry. Both individuals were remanded to the El Paso Country Detention Facility pending charges.
“These arrests continue to highlight the dangers that Transnational Criminal Organizations pose by attempting to smuggle criminals into our country. Dangerous criminals endanger our communities when they often continue to disregard rule of law. The agents of the El Paso Sector are committed to their duties of protecting the American people, safeguarding our borders, and enhancing the nation’s economic prosperity,” said El Paso Sector Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez. “Our agents work diligently and tirelessly to protect our communities and our country. These significant arrests made over the span of seven days demonstrate the importance of the work the agents do every day. Keeping convicted felons off our streets is amongst the most vital duties performed by Border Patrol Agents.”
It is important to note that an arrest or criminal complaint is merely a charge and should not be considered evidence of guilt. Subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection welcomes assistance from the community. Citizens are encouraged to report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol while remaining anonymous by calling 1-800-635-2509.
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.