CBP stops migrants from using railroad cars and tracks to sneak into the country

Border Report Tour

20 pulled from containers, three try to make run for it at international rail bridge; two had criminal records and many had prior deportations, agency says

EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) — Several unauthorized migrants have tried to sneak into the country in the past few days by exploiting international railroad crossings, federal officials say.

Several migrants await processing after allegedly being caught trying to sneak into the country aboard railroad cars coming over from Mexico. CBP photo

But El Paso Sector U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers have been there to apprehend at least 23 of them. The detainees include citizens from Guatemala, Honduras, Ecuador, Brazil, Cuba and Mexico.

The first attempt was foiled shortly after 1 a.m. on Monday, when CBP officers inspecting a train coming from Mexico at the Burlington Northern Santa Fe rail crossing in El Paso found three stowaways hiding in a rail tanker, the agency said. One of the detainees had previously been deported from the U.S.

A second, massive attempted illegal crossing was stopped cold just before 7 p.m. on Tuesday, when CBP officers got 15 people out of two automobile-hauler railcars at the Union Pacific rail crossing. The agency said 10 of the detainees had prior deportations, one had a previous domestic violence charge and another has an extensive criminal history.

Two men and a woman are taken into custody on the tracks on the U.S. side of the border wall. CBP photo

More migrants were apprehended three hours later at the same rail crossing. That one involved two men coming over from Mexico hidden in a container used to transport bulk materials.

A fourth attempted illegal crossing was stopped before 1 a.m. on Wednesday back at the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Rail Yard, where three people tried to make a run for it over the international rail bridge, CBP said.

“Vigilance is one of our core values,” said El Paso Director of Field Operations Hector Mancha. “These apprehensions are a reflection of our officers’ commitment to securing our border, protecting and keeping our community safe.”

All of the detainees will be processed or charged and according to the applicable immigration laws, CBP said.

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