Friday, April 25, 2008

Border Patrol detains registered sex offender crossing into U.S.

Border Patrol agents in El Paso, Texas say they know that smugglers for many years have wanted to cross the border on its bridges in order to enter the U.S. But they were surprised when they recently saw a man hiding near a support beam under the Bridge of the Americas.

After attempting to rescue him, Border Patrol officers detained the man after they found that he is from Chile, and is also a registered sex offender in Dade County, Florida. They say the man was abandoned on the bridge because a wheel fell off the cart he used to travel under the bridge. One agent described the cart as "almost a railway cart with wheels fitted underneath."

In February, Mexican authorities arrested 6 people with a similar cart in Juarez. They believe the carts are used to smuggle drugs and/or individuals, but are not sure yet if the individuals use a pulley system or have to push themselves along.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said the El Paso arrest is indicative of the increased dangers forced on border crossers as smugglers as they look for more creative methods to avoid the "Zero-Tolerance" policy in west Texas and New Mexico.

"Zero-Tolerance" is a new strategy in which all illegal immigrants caught crossing into the U.S. in west Texas and New Mexico are fingerprinted and entered into a database. If they are caught crossing into the U.S. again, they will face criminal charges. Before the initiative, illegal immigrants caught by Border Patrol agents were simply deported back to Mexico.

1 comment:

Please be civil. Thank you.