LUKEVILLE, AZ — Federal immigration officers apprehended a mother and her child after a camera recorded them getting an armed escort to the international boundary near Lukeville earlier this month.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection video shows several men, including at least three armed with assault rifles, escorting the mother and her 8-year-old son until they crossed the vehicle barrier which separates Mexico from the United States.
The incident happened in the same area where the Border Patrol says smugglers drop off large groups of migrants who enter the country illegally. Just like the large groups of migrants, authorities say the woman and her son are from Central America.
Immigration officials say families from that region, including Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, have been entering the country illegally in record numbers as they hope to seek asylum and escape violence in their home countries.
From October 2018 (when CBP's fiscal year began) through March 2019 (the most recent month for which data is available), more than half of those apprehended at the southwest border have been classified as members of family units, according to statistics published by the agency.