On the eve of the Fourth of July, two active duty US Marines were arrested by a US Border Patrol agent for allegedly attempting to smuggle three undocumented Mexican immigrants into the US by way of California. They now face federal charges in a California court.
Lance Corporals David Javier Salazar-Quintero and Byron Darnell Law II of the 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, at Camp Pendleton, California, became the latest active-duty US troops accused of aiding in the illegal transportation of immigrants across the US-Mexico border “for financial gain,” according to US District Court documents obtained by the Marine Corps Times (MCT) from the Southern District of California.
According to a federal complaint, a Border Patrol agent was put on alert after the Marines’ black BMW, operated by Law, parked on the median along Interstate 8, just outside of Jacumba Hot Springs, California.
Minutes later, the two Marines and their three undocumented pasengers were arrested. Court documents say the undocumented immigrants immediately confessed their illegal status to the agent.
It’s unknown who was the actual mastermind behind the plan, as Law claimed to border agents that Salazar-Quintero contacted him on July 2, asking if he wanted to make $1,000 for transporting an “illegal alien.” Furthermore, the two were supposedly taking orders via phone from an “unknown Mexican number,” whose operator never paid them for the job.