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9 charged in Southern California human/drug smuggling cases

July 15, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Nine people were charged Friday in connection with smuggling people and drugs into Southern California.

Various federal charges include conspiring to bring illegal aliens into the U.S. and illegal entry, according to the Dept. of Homeland Security.

Fourteen people were detained last week at Crystal Cove State Park in a failed human-smuggling attempt. The boat's captain, assistant captain and navigator are among those charged.

Prior to the Crystal Cove incident, 15 Mexican nationals and Guatemala were found on Santa Cruz Island after being abandoned by smugglers.

Four men were arrested this week when Customs Enforcement officials discovered nearly 500 pounds of marijuana hidden on a pleasure boat off the coast of Dana Point; two onboard were arrested and two men on shore waiting to take delivery were also arrested.