Mexican migrants on a dock
Mexican migrants apprehended by the Border Patrol on Sunday. Courtesy CBP

Border Patrol agents arrested 34 people in maritime smuggling incidents on Sunday and Monday amid a recent increase in such attempts by sea.

The first incident occurred at 11:15 a.m. on Sunday when a Department of Homeland Security aircraft observed a suspicious boat enter U.S. waters. The 25-foot cuddy-cabin pleasure craft was intercepted a mile southeast of Point Loma.

Agents found 21 people ranging in age from 19 and 59. Four were identified as suspected smugglers — two of them U.S citizens — and the remaining 17 were Mexican migrants.

The second smuggling attempt occurred just after midnight on Monday morning, when an aircraft detected a panga boat 13 miles west of San Clemente.

A Coast Guard Cutter intercepted the vessel about an hour later as it was landing just south of the San Clemente Pier.

Fourteen people ran from the boat, but Border Patrol agents caught 13. Nine were Mexican men, two were boys, and two were Chinese men.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has cited an increase in such maritime smuggling attempts following replacement of sections of the border wall in the San Diego area.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.