At least 30 people from the illegal immigrant caravan had already been arrested for jumping the border as of Monday morning, border sources told The Washington Times, and the government filed the first criminal charges against them later in the day.
One group included nearly 20 people, while others attempted to sneak over in smaller groups, one source said.
Agents nabbed them and confirmed they were part of the caravan that’s been traversing Mexico for more than a month.
Most of the migrants still in the caravan appear to be waiting to try to enter the country through the legal port of entry, planning to make an official asylum request. But other migrants who had concluded they were unlikely to win asylum had said they would try to jump the border between the ports of entry, hoping to elude capture.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced charges filed against 11 illegal immigrants nabbed Friday and Sunday, who were apparently part of the more than 30 captured.
Border Patrol agents nabbed one group of seven migrants in a region they call “Goat Canyon” at 6 p.m. Friday, and three hours later nabbed another 18 people. Of them, eight are facing criminal charges: two from El Salvador, five from Honduras and one Mexican.
Two migrants were nabbed Friday night in another location known as “W-8” and one of them, a Guatemalan, faces charges of illegal entry.
Two lone migrants were also nabbed in separate incidents Sunday night.
“The United States will not stand by as our immigration laws are ignored and our nation’s safety is jeopardized,” Mr. Sessions said.
The charges were brought by the new U.S. attorney for southern California, Adam L. Braverman.
He said the U.S. will welcome legal immigrants but must punish those who defy the law.
• Stephen Dinan can be reached at email@example.com.
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