Border patrol agents in McAllen, Texas rescued a three-year-old girl on Monday who was abandoned by a human smuggler after he first helped her mother illegally cross into the U.S. and was supposed to go back for the child, according to a Tuesday U.S. Customs and Border Protection press release.
McAllen Station authorities responded to a tip from Hidalgo Port of Entry that there were illegal immigrants hiding under the bridge that connects the U.S. entryway to Mexico. When border patrol agents investigated, they found a woman beneath the bridge who claimed she was separated from her daughter, leaving the child on the Mexican side of the border, according to the CBP press release.
The mother said the smuggler tried to bring the child, but she saw them both drifting down river and wasn’t sure if they were going back into Mexico after she lost sight of them.
The child was later found unharmed walking along the river road and was rescued by CBP and National Guard rescue workers and reunited her with her mother, CBP said. The smuggler swam back into Mexico before he could be caught, CBP told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
CBP’s rescue occurred in the same region of Texas where border patrol agents last week arrested MS-13 gang members who were charged with sex-crimes against children, according to KGNS-TV news. (RELATED: Illegal El Salvador Woman Pleads Guilty To Multiple Armed Robberies With MS-13 Gang)
Border patrol agents arrested three gang members and two other men who were charged with sex crimes against children in the Rio Grande Valley as a heightened attempt to crack down on illegal crossings into the U.S., CBP said in a press release on Tuesday.
President Donald Trump has taken a hard line stance against illegal immigration at the border, in part because of the danger that MS-13 and other criminals crossing the border pose to Americans. He has also pointed out the dangerous conditions that children are subjected to by coyotes and human smugglers bringing them into the U.S.
“People that come in violate the law, they endanger their children in the process,” Trump told the National Federation of Independent Business earlier in June.
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