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Immigration rights student activist among seven arrested, some linked to L.A.-based drug trafficking organization: U.S. Border Patrol

May 22, 2017  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Immigration rights student activist among seven arrested, some linked to L.A.-based drug trafficking organization: U.S. Border Patrol

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Agents with U.S. Border Patrol arrested seven people including an immigration rights activist, some of whom are linked to a transnational narcotics smuggling group based in Los Angeles, on May 18th.

The arrests occurred as the result of targeted enforcement actions after a criminal investigation of the group. The arrests took place throughout L.A. Seven individuals were apprehended for immigration violations.

Among those who were arrested was 22-year-old Claudia Rueda-Vidal, who is a Cal-State immigration right student activist and Mexican national living illegally in the U.S., the L.A. Times reported.

In a statement, U.S. Border Patrol officials say Rueda’s parents, Teresa Vidal-Jaime and Hugo Rueda, are allegedly associated with the narcotics smuggling group that was the target of the investigation.

Vidal-Jaime and Rueda were arrested on April 24th after agents discovered 33 pounds of cocaine and $630,000 in cash. Officers arrested Vidal-Jaime for an immigration violation, and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department arrested Rueda on narcotics charges.

“These targeted arrests should send a message to anyone linked to transnational smuggling,” Roy D. Villareal, Deputy Chief Patrol Agent of the San Diego Sector, said. “Our agents will be relentless to put these organizations out of business.”

Five male Mexican citizens and one female Guatemalan native were also arrested during the operation.

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