U.S. Border Patrol agents assigned to the Rio Grande Valley Sector dismantled a stash house operation and arrested 18 people involved in illegal immigration, violent gangs and sex crimes across the state.
Wednesday, Border Patrol agents, working in collaboration with the Hidalgo County Constables Office Precinct 4 and the San Juan Police Department, identified a suspected stash house operating out of a residence in San Juan, Texas. Inside, they discovered 15 illegal aliens from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Mexico. All 15 were arrested and are being processed for prosecution and removal.
In separate actions, the Border Patrol also arrested two members of the 18th street gang, also known as Calle 18, Barrio 18 and La 18, and a smuggler who was also a sexual predator. One of the gang members also brought a minor into the country illegally.
Monday, McAllen agents apprehended a Salvadoran national near Granjeno, Texas. The man entered the country illegally with his minor son. His record later revealed that he is a member of the 18th Street gang. Illegal aliens traveling as family units are treated more favorably by liberal judges than those entering alone.
Also on Monday, agents assigned to the Falfurrias station arrested a United States citizen attempting to smuggle two illegal aliens through the checkpoint. The man’s record revealed that he was arrested by the Austin Police Department in 2002 for indecency with a child sexual contact. The man was convicted and sentenced to two years probation.
Yesterday, Falfurrias agents arrested a Salvadoran national whose records showed that he is a member of the 18th Street gang.
The 18th street gang is a transnational criminal organization that started as a Los Angeles street gang. The group is closely allied with the Mexican Mafia and is one of the most dangerous street gangs in the U.S.
“We recognize them as one of the most violent street gangs and one of the most prolific in the United States,” said former ATF Special agent George Rodriguez.
Wherever 18th Street surfaces, the quality of life inevitably suffers, bringing despair to residents and presenting law enforcement authorities with challenges they seem unable to conquer.
Cars are stolen, homes burglarized. On average, someone in Los Angeles County is assaulted or robbed by 18th Streeters every day. The gang has left a bloody trail of more than 100 homicides in the city of Los Angeles since 1990–a pace three times that of many of the city’s most active gangs.
The public is encouraged to take a stand against crime in their communities and report suspicious activity at 800-863-9382.