Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced on Monday that agents near Abrams, Texas picked up a group of 10 migrants who had crossed the border illegally. Included in the group was a Salvadoran man who had been arrested in Washington for the rape of a child and later convicted and sentenced to 34 months in prison and community service.
The migrant group he was traveling with included one unaccompanied child, CBP said in a release.
Meanwhile, in Mission, Texas, agents arrested a 49-year-old Salvadoran who had entered the U.S. illegally and had a previous conviction for sexual contact of a 9-year-old in New York City. He was sentenced in 2014 to a year in jail for second degree sexual abuse.
In a statement, CBP said both men are being “processed accordingly.” The men are the latest convicted sex offenders who have tried to enter the U.S. recently, as officials grapple with an overwhelming number of migrants trying to come through the southern border.
“Even with the spread of the COVID-19 virus, human smugglers continue to try these brazen attempts with zero regard for the lives they endanger nor to the health of the citizens of our great nation,” CBP said in a statement. “The U.S. Border Patrol agents of the Rio Grande Valley Sector will continue to safeguard the nation and community against these criminal elements.”
In March, CBP announced the arrest of multiple convicted “sexual predators” caught trying to enter illegally, including some with child sex convictions.
Last month, the agency announced that in a span of just two days it had picked up three convicted child sex offenders among groups of illegal immigrants. One had been charged with aggravated sexual battery of a victim under 13 and was later convicted in Virginia.
In all, CBP said that in April it encountered more than 178,000 migrants at the border, including thousands of unaccompanied children traveling in those groups.
Separately, officials have estimated that more than 1,000 migrants are getting past overwhelmed agents every day. Agents have also told Fox News that smugglers will often use groups of children to distract agents, so they can send adults through other parts of the border.