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American authorities want the extradition of an alleged smuggler living in Quebec

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The Canada-United States border has become a hub for illegal migration. (Archive photo)

The Canadian Press

New York state authorities are seeking the extradition of a Colombian living in Quebec, who has been accused of human trafficking in connection with the death of a migrant who attempted to cross illegally from Canada to the United States last December.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of New York has charged Jhader Aguusto Uribe-Tobar, 35, with three counts of human trafficking in connection with the death of Ana Karen Vasquez-Flores.

Ms. Vasquez-Flores, 33, who was pregnant, was found in the Great Chazy River near Champlain, on December 14. Two days earlier, her husband had alerted a U.S. Border Patrol agent that she had not come out of the woods as planned.

US authorities say Jhader Aguusto Uribe-Tobar advertised his services on TikTok, under a pseudonym, and charged the woman and her husband $2,500 to guide her via text messages as she crossed alone the border.

Court documents filed by New York authorities in Quebec Superior Court allege that her husband, Miguel Mojarro-Magna, contacted the TikTok account and was told that the trip to the United States, which included crossing the waterway, could take up to three hours.

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During the exchange of messages on the social network, Mr. Mojarro-Magna was allegedly told that Ms. Vasquez-Flores would be directed to the border with her mobile phone, and also that he was not using no guide, that he worked in another way.

In response to the extradition request, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) arrested Mr. Uribe-Tobar at his home in Saint-Hyacinthe, Montérégie, at the end of December. He appeared at the Montreal courthouse on December 28 and is expected to return to court on January 12.

The RCMP referred all questions about the #x27;case to the American authorities.

Court records indicate Uribe-Tobar was arrested by RCMP in September near the U.S. border with four Mexican nationals, but was released. The four Mexicans were arrested after crossing the border the next day.

U.S. authorities have noted an increase in the number of people crossing illegally into Canada, especially Mexican nationals who find it an easier way to enter the country than going through the Mexico-US border.

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Illegal migrants crossing the Canada-United States border (File photo)

In mid-December, the week that U.S. Border Patrol agents found Ms. Vasquez-Flores' body, they also rescued two others people in the woods who had entered the country from Canada.

Most migrants who attempt to make the journey on foot are unprepared for the cold, police say. Last year, several migrants died trying to reach the United States.

You can't cross the north woods with tennis shoes and hope for the best, Maj. Nicholas Leon of the Clinton County, N.Y., Sheriff's Office said Friday.

In January 2023, Fritznel Richard, 44, a Haitian, was found frozen to death in a wooded area near Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec. Police said he was trying to cross the border into the United States. He probably died of hypothermia and his friends said he had been unable to obtain a work permit in Canada and wanted to reunite with his wife in the United States. p>

In late February, José Leos Cervantes, 45, from Aguascalientes, Mexico, collapsed and died shortly after crossing on foot the American border from Quebec.

On the other hand, the Mohawk police of Akwesasne are still investigating the drowning of eight people, including two children under the age of three, whose bodies were pulled from the St. Lawrence River in March. The migrants – an Indian family of four and a Romanian family of four – were attempting to illegally enter the United States from Canada.

By admin

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