Large Group of Illegal Immigrants Found in Ariz.

Amanda Lee Myers, KLAS-TV (Las Vegas), February 23, 2011

Border agents said Wednesday they arrested an unusually large group of illegal immigrants crossing through the western Arizona desert in what authorities said is proof that increased border technology is working.

Border Patrol surveillance video operators Friday morning spotted a group of more than 100 people walking just north of the Mexico border about 15 miles west of Lukeville, Ariz., Agent Eric Cantu said.

When agents responded, Cantu said they were able to arrest 22 people but the rest of the group scattered.

A helicopter team found much of the group hiding in thick brush, and agents arrested 106 additional illegal immigrants. {snip}

The 128 men who were apprehended have either been returned to Mexico or were jailed because of prior convictions.

The Border Patrol’s Tucson sector typically sees such large groups of border crossers no more than once or twice a year, Cantu said. Illegal immigrants typically travel in groups of five to 15, he said, because larger groups are much easier to detect.

{snip}

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