Seven Chinese nationals led by a Mexican alleged smuggler who were illegally in the United States were arrested Sunday by U.S. Border Patrol agents near Comstock, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Wednesday.

Agents conducting line watch duties observed a group of eight who had just crossed the border illegally, the agency said.

After a short foot chase, agents apprehended seven Chinese nationals and one Mexican national. The group of Chinese nationals consisted of six men and one woman, all adults. All were transported to the Comstock Station and processed as per U.S. Customs and Border Protection guidelines.

“Agents in Del Rio Sector continue to arrest individuals from countries across the world,” said Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Raul L. Ortiz. “This trend began last year and so far has been continuing into the new fiscal year.”

The Mexican national was identified as the suspected smuggler and will be charged with United States Code Title 8, Section 1324 – alien smuggling, which carries a maximum sentence of up to 10 years in prison.

Throughout Fiscal Year 2019, Del Rio Sector arrested people from 59 different countries. So far in FY 2020, Del Rio Sector has arrested individuals from 30 different countries, the agency said.

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