Two illegal immigrants who were part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program were arrested – after being caught running a human smuggling operation in San Diego.
Border Patrol arrested the first man, a 20-year-old Mexican national whose name who remains unidentified near Torrey Pines State Beach in San Diego on January 24, after someone reported a suspected smuggling incident.
Agents found a suspicious vehicle pulled over on the side of Interstate 5, and conducted an immigration check, which resulted in the arrest of the 20-year-old. In addition to the man suspected of human smuggling, the police found two additional illegal immigrants: two Mexican nationals, ages 21 and 22. The 20-year-old and 22-year-old admitted to agents that they had engaged in human smuggling.
The following day, January 25, Border Patrol agents stumbled on a similar scene in the eastern part of San Diego County, when they pulled over a blue Honda passing near an immigration checkpoint.
The driver of that car – who was also a Dreamer, a 22-year-old Mexican national, admitted to agents that he was scouting the area to aid a group of smugglers. A 25-year-old US citizen was also later arrested, suspected of being part of the human smuggling scheme.
It’s unclear if the suspects caught over the two day period were part of the same smuggling ring, or whether they were operating separately. If convicted, all men arrested for human trafficking face both jail time in the United States and deportation to Mexico.