EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) — Two Mexican men have been charged with a migrant smuggling attempt that ended in three deaths.
Jose Luis Aguilera-Guzman and Jesus David Nuñez-Monreal allegedly led a group of migrants across the border into the New Mexico desert on July 19.
According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, court documents state that the groups had run out of water and became lost when some migrants could no longer continue north.
Border Patrol agents, Luna County Sheriff Deputies and members of the New Mexico National Guard responded to a distress call.
The National Guard traveled by helicopter and spotted seven migrants.
After learning that the group left three people behind, border agents found those three individuals dead.
Aguilera-Guzman and Nuñez-Monreal, both of Mexico, made an initial appearance in federal court on Friday. They have been charged with conspiracy and bringing in and harboring aliens resulting in death and face up to life in prison. Both men will remain in custody pending a preliminary and detention hearing on Wednesday.
Homeland Security Investigations investigated the case with assistance from U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Luna County Sheriff’s Office and the New Mexico National Guard, the news release said. Mark Standridge, the assistant United States Attorney for the new Mexico District, is prosecuting the case.