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A self-admitted Mexican brush guide was found to have been apprehended 19 prior times following his 20th apprehension Thursday, according to a criminal complaint.
Carlos Daniel Tudon-Espinoza, born in 2005, was charged with smuggling people illegally present in the United States.
At about 9:30 p.m., a group of Border Patrol agents working near Mercedes observed a group of eight people on a raft crossing the Rio Grande and intercepted them with the help of a Border Patrol camera operator.
The agents proceeded to arrest seven of the people who were determined to be illegally present in the U.S.
The eighth person, Tudon, was found tucked away deep under the brush and arrested as well.
“At the Weslaco Border Patrol Station, record checks revealed Tudon is a self-admitted brush guide in the Weslaco area with 19 prior apprehensions,” the complaint said.
At the station, Tudon claimed that he had been working as a brush guide for the past three years for a human smuggler and that he gets paid $200 for every successful smuggled person.
Tudon is scheduled to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Juan F. Alanis for his preliminary examination and detention hearing in McAllen federal court on Thursday afternoon.