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2 Indians among 19 arrested for entering US illegally by boat from Mexico

According to data, Indians are among the fastest growing groups of people crossing illegally into the United States — this fiscal year, 4,197 Indians were arrested by border patrol agents.

world Updated: Aug 29, 2018 10:23 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Washington
US border,US-Mexico border,US Customs and Border Protection Agency
his US Customs and Border Protection photo obtained June 18, 2018, shows intake of illegal border crossers by US Border Patrol agents at the Central Processing Center in McAllen, Texas on May 23, 2018. (Photo used for representative purposes only)(AFP File Photo )

Two Indian nationals were among 19 people arrested on Monday by the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency as they illegally crossed into the country from Mexico.

CBP said the 19 illegal immigrants were on a on a panga-style boat, which was spotted entering US waters from Mexico on Sunday night by a US border patrol aerial surveillance aircraft. The US coast guard intercepted the boat 24 km of the coast of Point Loma, California.

Those apprehended included two smugglers and 15 Mexican nationals. CBP said the smugglers may face human smuggling charges.

Indians are among the fastest growing groups of people crossing illegally into the United States — this fiscal year, 4,197 Indians were arrested by border patrol agents, according to data from Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, sourced by the Los Angeles Times.

Many of them will seek, or have already sought, asylum. Some petitioners will be accepted — 483 Indians were granted asylum in 2014 and 2016, according to the most recent count made available by the United States. The rest will be deported to India.

The journey from India takes months and traverses through multiple countries, with the last few miles from Mexico into the US covered on foot, vehicles or as in the Monday arrest, on boat. It’s a well organized human smuggling network and can cost upward of Rs 25 lakh per person, with no guarantees.

The number of Indians illegally in the United States was 430,000 in 2014, according to the department of homeland security. A large number of them came on temporary visas and overstayed.

First Published: Aug 29, 2018 09:00 IST