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HSI El Paso and USBP arrest 25 undocumented noncitizens, 2 alleged smugglers; seize nearly $3,000

EL PASO, Texas — Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) arrested 25 undocumented noncitizens from five different countries and two alleged smugglers from Mexico March 4 in an area stash house.

U.S. Border Patrol agents collaborated with HSI special agents assigned to the Border Enforcement Security Task Force (BEST).

Cesar Daniel Hernandez-Ortiz, 23, and Angel Gabriel Lopez-Alvarado, 18, remain in federal custody charged with human smuggling. The men, both Mexican nationals unlawfully present in the United States, and 25 undocumented noncitizens were discovered in a stash house in the 200 block of Sofia Place in the Lower Valley. Sixteen were from Mexico, four from Honduras, two from Guatemala, two from El Salvador, and one from Bolivia.

Agents also seized $2,890 from the alleged smugglers. The enforcement action was part of ongoing efforts to identify and dismantle transnational criminal organizations involved in human smuggling and harboring undocumented noncitizens.

“HSI is steadfastly committed to using every available resource at our disposal to identify and investigate illicit organizations involved in human smuggling,” said HSI El Paso acting Special Agent in Charge Eric McLoughlin. “We will continue to work with our partners to maintain the integrity of our border and safety of our communities.”

On March 5, a U.S. district judge ordered Hernandez-Ortiz and Lopez-Alvarado detained without bond. A detention and preliminary hearing is set for March 8 in federal court.

HSI El Paso continues to address the serious public safety threat posed by human smuggling organizations and their reckless disregard for the health and safety of the people they exploit. To report suspicious smuggling activity, call 866-347-2423. For more news and information on HSI’s efforts to investigate human smuggling in West Texas and the state of New Mexico, follow us on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @HSIElPaso.

HSI is the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel and finance move. HSI’s workforce of more than 8,700 employees consists of more than 6,000 special agents assigned to 237 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’ largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.



Originally published at https://www.ice.gov/news/releases/hsi-el-paso-and-usbp-arrest-25-undocumented-noncitizens-2-alleged-smugglers-seize

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