Maine Border Patrol agents arrest six from four countries in recent incidents

Maine’s Chief Border Patrol Agent Jason Owens, left, with a picture of a map he posted on Facebook shown to the right.

HODGDON, MAINE – U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents have arrested six individuals illegally present in the United States in the month of December in two separate incidents. The six individuals hail from four different nations.

The first of the two incidents occurred in Houlton on December 4th. A tip from a member of the public led to the arrest of three men, one a Russian national and two from Kazakhstan.

The Russian national was determined to have violated his entry conditions as he entered the United States legally on a student visa but failed to maintain enrollment in an educational program. The Russian national was also working without authorization.

The two men from Kazakhstan had entered the United States as “visitors” but were found to be engaging in unauthorized employment.

Our local partners are a critical part of border security,” said Jason D. Owens, Chief Patrol Agent of the Border Patrol in Maine.  “Like any other law enforcement agency, we rely on them every day to report suspicious activity.”

The second incident occurred in Waterville on December 6. There, agents on a routine patrol encountered three men, one from Guatemala and two from Mexico, that had entered the United States illegally in Arizona. All three were engaged in unauthorized employment.

Following initial processing for immigration related violations, all subjects were entered into removal proceedings and turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO).  Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) conducts investigations relating to the hiring and employment of unauthorized labor.

The news extends a string of arrests across Maine for Border Patrol agents. Through the summer and fall, agents have announced arrests for illegal entry, unauthorized employment, drug charges and more.

Chief Border Patrol Agent Jason Owens posted a series of maps on Facebook showing where the men arrested had traveled from, saying, “Think the northern border is quiet? Think nothing happens in Maine? Think again.

‪The #BorderSecurity crisis affects us all.”

President Donald Trump has made securing America’s borders a top priority, with efforts made to enhance enforcement efforts and protect the southern border with a border wall, amid an ongoing border crisis. The crisis has manifested in numerous ways in Maine, from an influx of individuals overwhelming the city of Portland’s local welfare program to the arrests made across the state.

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