Local March 28, 2013 | 9:21 am

US authorities apprehend 113 Haitian migrants

Aguadilla,Puerto Rico. – US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), US Coast Guard (USCG), andPuerto Rico Police (PRPD) apprehended 113 undocumented immigrant citizens ofHaiti over the weekend in three separate events.

After midnight on March 22, a CBP MaritimePatrol Aircraft detected about 10 miles northwest of Mona a single engine vesseltraveling south eastbound without navigation lights. The CBP aircraftmaintained constant surveillance of the vessel and coordinated an intercept withUSCG Farallon, finding 15 people on board, 13 claiming to be citizens of Haitiand two claiming to be citizens of the Dominican Republic.

Earlier the same day, a USCG MH65 Helicopter detected a twin-engine vesselapproximately 14 miles north of Monito, southeast bound without navigationallights, coordinating an intercept with USCG cutter Farallon. The USCGcrew found 64 people on board the 30 foot wooden vessel, 62 claiming to becitizens of Haiti and two citizens of the Dominican Republic.

Saturday March 23, the Puerto Rico Police contacted the Ramey BorderPatrol Station reporting the apprehension of 15 migrants claiming to be Haitiancitizens who landed on board a 20-foot yola left abandoned in Los Pozos beach in the southwest cornerof the island. PRPD and CBP BorderPatrol Agents extensively searched the area, apprehending 19 additionalmigrants.

Today, Tomas Guerrero, Segundo Alcala-Del Rosario, Miguel Jacinto-Saldana,Samuel Abreu-Pion and Radames Castillo-Soriano, all citizens of the DominicanRepublic, will make an initial appearance appear before a US District CourtMagistrate Judge for violations to US immigration law. CBP Border Patrol presented a complaintagainst the aforementioned defendants before Special Assistant US Attorney TiffanyKelley who accepted the case for prosecution.

TheCaribbean Border Interagency Group (CBIG) was formally created to unify effortsof the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the U.S. Coast Guard, Immigrationand Customs Enforcement, the United States Attorney‘s Office for the Districtof Puerto Rico, and Puerto Rico Police Joint Forces of Rapid Action (FURA, forits Spanish acronym), in their common goal of securing the borders of PuertoRico and the U.S. Virgin Islands against illegal migrant and drug smuggling.

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