- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Three suspected ringleaders of two major alien-smuggling organizations and nine accomplices have been indicted by a Texas federal grand jury on charges of trucking more than 600 illegals from the El Paso area to Dallas and beyond during the past two years.

All but three of the gang members were taken into custody this week by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents, assisted by the U.S. Border Patrol. Two of the gang members were identified in indictments unsealed Friday, and another is in La Tuna Federal Correctional Institution on a previous alien-smuggling conviction.

“These unscrupulous smugglers operate ruthlessly and with no regard for the human beings whose lives they endanger,” said ICE special agent in charge Kyle Hutchins, who heads the agency’s El Paso field office. “During this investigation, our special agents encountered various groups with 35 to 79 people crammed in trailers for the nonstop nine-hour trip to Dallas from El Paso with no food and limited water.

“The only way to enter or exit the trailers was through trailer doors, which were sometimes padlocked,” Mr. Hutchins said.

The gang members were identified as residents of El Paso County and Dallas. The arrests culminated a two-year undercover investigation.

ICE spokesman Dean Boyd said Mike Price, 53, his wife, Fabiola del Carmen Moguel de Price, 39, and Sam Jarvis, 52, headed two separate organizations that generated more than $1.6 million in smuggling fees between March 2003 and October 2005.

He said Mr. Jarvis and the Prices, all of Socorro, Texas, originally worked together, but the Prices left the Jarvis organization in 2003 to establish their own alien-smuggling enterprise.

Mr. Boyd said one of the smuggling loads intercepted included 28 illegal aliens that Ronald Dean Anglin, 54, a co-leader of the Price organization, attempted to sneak past a Border Patrol checkpoint near Sierra Blanca, Texas. The aliens were concealed in a large plywood box covered with a blue tarp on top of a flatbed trailer, he said.

Mr. Jarvis purportedly offered drivers of 18-wheel rigs $300 for each illegal alien they concealed and hauled to the Dallas area in their trailers.

Mr. Boyd said the two gangs smuggled Brazilians, Colombians, Hondurans, Salvadorans, Guatemalans, Nicaraguans, Ecuadoreans and Mexicans. Depending on the nationality, he said, the gangs charged each alien between $1,500 and $6,000 to be smuggled into the United States and later brought to Arizona, Colorado, Oklahoma, Illinois, Florida and New York.

Both organizations housed the aliens in “drop houses” throughout El Paso County after smuggling them into the United States from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Mr. Boyd said.

He said Mr. Price, his wife and Mr. Jarvis were charged with conspiracy to smuggle aliens.

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