Five Mexican citizens have been charged with various immigration crimes in federal court after being arrested near Cut Bank on Nov. 17.
On Thursday, U.S. Attorney Kurt G. Alme announced that Alberto Guillen-Gordillo, 22, Omero Banderas-Rodriguez, 39, Josue Bermudez-Lopez, 26, and Samuel Velasco-Tovar, 28, had been charged with illegal transport of aliens and conspiracy to transport aliens. A fifth defendant, Ma Mercedes Rivera-Gutierrez, 39, was charged with illegal reentry.
All five people were arrested on Nov. 17 after the U.S. Border Patrol agents, with assistance from the Glacier County Sheriff’s Office and Cut Bank Police Department, pulled over two SUVs near Cut Bank. According to the U.S. Border Patrol, 18 people were arrested, most of them in the country illegally. Another person was arrested at a hotel in Cut Bank.
According to court documents, the Border Patrol had received a tip about suspicious activity at a Cut Bank hotel back in October. The subsequent investigation revealed that the defendants had allegedly been smuggling people in from Canada for the last six months.
“These arrests are proof that everyday citizens can make a difference in our national security,” said Deputy Chief Patrol Agent Scott Good. “We appreciate and will continue to rely on our great citizens and law enforcement partners across Montana and in Canada to keep our communities safer.”