U.S. Customs and Border Protection
A group of 101 migrants from five different countries were encountered on July 26. Photo credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection

More than 200 migrants were detained near Imperial Beach over the past week for allegedly attempting to enter the United States illegally, Border Patrol officials said Wednesday.

In two separate incidents, officials say 224 people were detained for crossing into the United States near Imperial Beach.

The first incident on Saturday involved 123 migrants who Border Patrol agents encountered at around 6:40 p.m., which officials said was the largest migrant group encountered locally since November, when 144 people were detained in Imperial Beach.

At about 1:45 a.m. Tuesday, 101 migrants were found inside a drainage tube at the international boundary. In Tuesday’s incident, the Border Patrol said smugglers used a blow torch to cut through bars in the tube, which allowed the migrants to cross through.

Border Patrol officials said the migrants were citizens of 13 different countries, the majority of whom — 183 people — were from Brazil. The groups included 167 adults and 57 people who were traveling with their families.

City News Service contributed to this article.


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Ellen Bullock