Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Feds: Human smuggling spiking in WA region.


SPOKANE, Wash. - Federal authorities in Spokane say the smuggling of humans across the U.S. border near Danville, northwest of Spokane, is spiking.

The special operations supervisor with the Spokane Sector of the U.S. Border Patrol told The Spokesman-Review that during the last two months, Border Patrol agents grabbed 11 undocumented immigrants.

Lonnie Moore says that total is more than the total for the previous fiscal year. In the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, the Border Patrol arrested 10 undocumented immigrants in the Danville area.

Moore says the latest arrests came late last week when Border Patrol agents, tipped by a local farmer, spotted eight Korean citizens, including two children, walking through a field in the United States. The Border Patrol says the Koreans couldn't speak English.

The Border Patrol says the Koreans were being led by Harry Edward John Harrison, a Canadian citizen, who was arrested on federal smuggling charges.

Harrison was ordered held in jail after an initial appearance today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cynthia Imbrogno.

The Korean citizens likely will be deported after being processed through U.S. immigration proceedings, unless they are repeat offenders. The juveniles, a 12-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy, also face likely deportation

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