Nearly half a dozen Arizona shuttle bus companies were raided Thursday for allegedly funneling thousands of illegal immigrants into Arizona.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents took 47 people into custody after a nationwide and international raid as part of a huge human smuggling investigation.
Federal agents targeted about 50 shuttle van operators and smugglers who are accused of using the vans to transport thousands of illegal immigrants from the Mexican border to the Phoenix area.
The investigation was dubbed “Operation In Plain Sight” because of the brazen nature of the transportation companies activities.
Investigators say the operators of four shuttle services in Tucson and a fifth in Phoenix created their businesses solely to help immigrant smugglers move their customers to Phoenix under a veil of legitimacy.
The search locations in Tucson were Saguaro Roadrunner Shuttles, America’s Shuttles, Sonoran Shuttles and Nogales Express Shuttles. In Phoenix, a search warrant was served at Sergio’s Shuttle, also known as Hermosillo Shuttles, in the area of 29th Avenue and Van Buren Street.
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