MCSO deputies apprehend 20 undocumented immigrants

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- Deputies with the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office took 20 undocumented immigrants into custody on Wednesday night.

The arrests began after deputies investigated a load vehicle in the northern part of the Valley and found 14 undocumented immigrants inside. The individuals told deputies that they had paid between $300 and $4,500 to be taken to states like New Mexico, Michigan, Alabama, and North Carolina.

While investigating the vehicle, deputies learned of a drop house in Mesa. They wound up finding another six undocumented immigrants at that home.

Three of the 20 people apprehended were minors. Two boys, ages 7 and 13, were said to be on their way to Florida and New York to be reunited with their mothers.

The boys, along with a 15-year-old and his mother, were turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. The 16 other individuals were booked into the 4th Avenue Jail on state felony human smuggling charges.

All but one of the individuals apprehended were from Mexico. The other suspect was from Guatemala. 

Following the arrests, Sheriff Joe Arpaio said he couldn’t understand why anyone would send their child across the border by themselves.

“Who in their right mind sends their child with complete strangers to an unsafe environment,” Arpaio asked.