U.S Border Patrol agents discovered two people trying to enter the country illegally using dive scooter. Agents say they apprehended the two Mexican nationals about 3/4 of a mile north of the border fence on the shores of Imperial Beach.
Agents say the suspects, a 38-year-old man and a 16-year-old boy, first spotted the pair from the air after 8 p.m. on Wednesday night. The men were walking north on the beach near Seacoast Drive when agents spotted them.
The Border Patrol aircraft radioed to agents on the ground who then intercepted the pair on the beach. The pair was trying to hide by lying in the sand at the time of their arrest, agents said. The two were transported to a local Border Patrol station for processing, according to the release.
Each suspect was carrying a dive scooter, a self-propelled underwater device.
This is the first time that there has been an actual apprehension of suspected illegal immigrants using dive scooters. In October, a suspected illegal immigrant tried to cross using the same method, but spotted agents and turned around back into Mexico.
Border Patrol says there has been a significant increase in the number of apprehensions at sea.
In fiscal year 2010 (Sept. 30, 2009 - Oct. 1, 2010), there were 110 vessels seized and 867 people apprehended. In 2009, there were 49 vessels and 400 people. In 2008, agents apprehended 33 vessels and 230 people.