Yuma Sector Border Patrol agents working near Dome Valley Sunday and Tuesday, arrested nine individuals and apprehended a previously deported felon in two separate human smuggling events.

In the first event at approximately 5:30 a.m. on Sunday, Wellton Station agents observed a white 2005 Toyota Sequoia passing through Dome Valley. Upon seeing the agents, the vehicle sped off. Agents located the vehicle abandoned on the side of the road a short distance away with footprints of five subjects leading away from it. Agents tracked and apprehended all five subjects, all illegal aliens from Mexico, who were subsequently charged with immigration violations.

In the second event at approximately 6 a.m. on Tuesday, Wellton Station agents attempted to perform an immigration inspection on the occupants of a white 2004 Ford F-150 traversing through Dome Valley. The vehicle fled from agents northbound along Highway 95 before changing direction and heading south. The driver pulled to the side of the road and allowed the four occupants to exit the vehicle.  He then attempted to drive away. Agents were able to apprehend the group, who were all illegal aliens from Mexico.  The U.S. citizen driver was taken into custody for human smuggling violations after he eventually stopped.

During processing, agents identified one of the illegal aliens as being previously deported and having a felony conviction for possession of a firearm in of Los Angeles, Calif.  He and the other individuals were charged with immigration violations.

Dome Valley is a route commonly used by smuggling organizations to attempt to evade apprehension by circumventing the Interstate 8 Immigration Checkpoint east of Yuma.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials welcome assistance from the community. Individuals can report suspicious activity to the Border Patrol and remain anonymous by calling 1-877-872-7435 toll free. Reporting illicit activity could result in saving someone’s life.