National Guard soldier arrested for smuggling Mexicans into United States

(U.S. Army Photo)

A member of the California National Guard has been arrested and charged with human trafficking after he was caught near San Diego this weekend.

Private First Class Edward Jair Acosta-Avila was listed as absent without leave (AWOL) when he was arrested, according to Air Force Lt. Col. Thomas Keegan -a California National Guard spokesman.

He was charged with “transportation of certain aliens for financial gain” in federal court with attempting to smuggle three Mexican men into the United States, according to USA Today.

On November 10, a Border Patrol agent found three men hiding under a blanket in the back of a Honda Accord driven by Acosta-Avila about two miles north of the border.

PFC Acosta-Avila said that he and his friend planned on splitting $400 for smuggling the three Mexicans into the US.

The Mexicans told authorities they had “made smuggling arrangements and agreed to pay between $6,000 and $7,000 each to smuggled into the United States.”

PFC Acosta-Avila’s friend, who had not been named, is his co-defendant.

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