Two women drugged, dressed in medical scrubs during smuggling attempt

Two women from Guatemala and Honduras were drugged and dressed in medical scrubs in an attempt to smuggle them through the Sarita checkpoint Wednesday, Border Patrol said in a criminal complaint.

Agents encountered the women about 4:50 a.m. that day in a Dodge Charger that had approached the checkpoint. The vehicle was driven by Roxanne Martinez, who is now facing smuggling charges.

“Both passengers appeared to be asleep. The agent asked Martinez to wake the passengers and she told the agent they were asleep because they just got out of work at the hospital. Both female passengers were wearing medical scrubs,” the complaint states.

One of the passengers woke up and the agent asked her about her citizenship, but she was unable to speak and Martinez told the agent that both passengers were citizens, according to the complaint.

During an attempt to question the other passenger, the agent reported that she was completely unresponsive and that her hair was covering her face, Border Patrol said in the complaint.

All three were referred for a secondary inspection where Border Patrol determined they were in the country illegally.

Martinez declined to speak with agents after being read her Miranda Rights, but provided a statement anyway, according to the complaint.

“After Martinez was read her Miranda Rights, she freely stated to a Border Patrol Agent, the two (people) were given Xanax prior to their arrival at the checkpoint by someone who had the vehicle and (people) ready for her to transport,” the complaint said.

One of the women told Border Patrol she had entered the United States illegally Oct. 3 and had stayed at two stash houses before being transported to a third house where a woman picked her up for transport to Houston.

She told the agent an unknown man gave her and the other woman a small white bar-like pill that made her feel sleepy, dizzy and tired.

“She stated she was not told what the pill was for. (She) stated the pill knocked her out and the next thing she remembered was being woken up by the Border Patrol Agent at the checkpoint,” the complaint said.

That document also notes that Martinez was arrested on two occasions in late 2020 for attempting to smuggle people, but was released both times.

She was scheduled to make a first appearance in federal court Friday morning in Corpus Christi in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge Julie K. Hampton.