Driver suspected of smuggling immigrants arrested near Grand Junction
MACK, Colorado – Police in western Colorado say they arrested a man suspected of transporting 18 people illegally from Mexico into the U.S. in a van.
Fruita police say 27-year-old Jose Esperdiador Ramirez Jr., of Ontario, Calif., told them he was paid $30 for each person in the van. The van was traveling from Arizona to Kansas.
Police say they stopped Ramirez Thursday after an officer saw the van weaving and that he was having trouble steering on Interstate 70 near Mack, about 265 miles west of Denver.
Police say the 18 people in the van are suspected of being in the country illegally. One was a juvenile who has been returned to Mexico. Police say the remaining adults are in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Ramirez made his first court appearance Friday.
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