Two undocumented immigrants are shown hunkered down in the rear of an SUV (far left image), which led U.S. Border Patrol agents to the discovery of a trailer in El Centro (center image) being used as a stash house where 21 undocumented immigrants were found on Monday, Dec. 7. | COURTESY PHOTOS

Border Patrol Stop Leads to Immigrant Stash House Find

EL CENTRO — U.S. Border Patrol agents from El Centro Sector stopped a vehicle that led to the discovery of a stash house Monday afternoon, Dec. 7, where 21 undocumented immigrants were found huddled in a trailer.

The incident occurred around 7:40 p.m., when agents assigned to the El Centro station conducted a vehicle stop on an SUV on Interstate 8 near Ocotillo. Agents conducted an immigration investigation of the driver and occupants, determining the driver was a U.S. citizen and that the four occupants were undocumented immigrants. They were all arrested and transported to the El Centro Sector rally point for further processing, according to the press release from U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

As a result of the arrests, agents were able to obtain information that a group of undocumented immigrants were being held in a mobile home in El Centro. Agents conducted a welfare check at the suspected stash house at 8 p.m., which resulted in the discovery of the 21 migrants and a U.S. citizen caretaker. The caretaker and undocumented immigrants were all arrested and transported to the El Centro Sector rally point, the press release stated.

The driver and caretaker, both U.S. citizens, were processed administratively and released.

The occupants of the vehicle and stash house, all from Mexico, were sent back to their country of origin immediately after they cleared the screening process.

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