DERBY — On Saturday, Border Patrol agents assigned to the Newport station say they arrested a man and woman, both citizens of Mexico, during a failed smuggling attempt.
Agents say they encountered two men driving a white Nissan Sentra near the international border.
According to authorities, both men claimed to be U.S. citizens from North Carolina and had rented a room at the Border Motel.
About a half hour later, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police observed two people with large backpacks enter the United States illegally just east of the town of Derby and notified the Swanton Sector.
While agents were attempting to locate the two that had entered illegally, they saw the two men driving the Nissan Sentra in the area also. The men allegedly drove the car slowly, flashing its lights, and turning around often.
Agents say the car remained in the area for about 20 minutes before they followed the Sentra back to the Border Motel.
The agents say they saw the two men exit their room with luggage, get in the Sentra, and head towards I-91. After noticing the Sentra now contained four people, agents performed a traffic stop.
Besides the two men, the Sentra contained a man and woman sitting in the rear seat.
During an immigration interview, the man claimed to be a citizen of Mexico, but the woman refused to state her citizenship.
Agents arrested the driver and front passenger for alien smuggling, a felony, and the two rear passengers for illegal entry, a misdemeanor.
Border Patrol agents brought the four to the Newport station for additional record checks and further processing. Those checks revealed that the Mexican man, age 36, had been previously removed from the United States in 2014, after an arrest in Buffalo, New York in 2008.
The checks also revealed that the woman, age 39, was also a citizen of Mexico. At the station, both Mexican citizens confessed to entering the United States illegally.
Authorities say both will be returned to Mexico.
The Swanton Border Patrol Sector is seizing the 2012 Nisan Sentra, and the two U.S. citizens from North Carolina were released.
“This case is an excellent example of the importance of information sharing between the United States Border Patrol and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police,” said U.S. Border Patrol Swanton Sector Chief Patrol Agent John Pfeifer. “The Swanton Sector relies on its partners to secure the international border, and the quick sharing of information is a major part of the sector’s success.”