Abbotsford Police have four border jumpers in custody, after apprehending them on Monday night near Gladwin Road and Zero Avenue.
At about 9:20 p.m. APD received a call from U.S. Border Patrol advising them that four people had crossed in that area. Police deployed patrol officers and a canine unit, supported by a helicopter from U.S. Border Patrol.
The canine unit was able to track two of the culprits, and the helicopter located the other pair, both not far from where they had crossed. They had no contraband or weapons, and Abbotsford Police Const. Ian MacDonald said they appear to be migrant workers from Central America. They are being held in custody, and will be turned over to CBSA.
MacDonald said the APD apprehends about 50-60 people illegally crossing the border each year, and that number is holding steady.
He said people crossing the border illegally generally fall into three categories: Hikers or travelers who cross by mistake or disregard; people smuggling contraband, who are most often North Americans; people from South or Central America who are coming to Canada to get migrant work.
He said the people apprehended Monday night will most likely be found to fall into the latter category.
The integrity of the border is something the CBSA and the APD both take seriously, added MacDonald.
The Zero Avenue/Gladwin Road area is a popular spot for border jumpers, because there is ample foliage for concealment. However, the foliage is of little use to conceal suspects from canines and helicopters with thermal imaging scopes, said MacDonald.