SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — Five bodies discovered decomposing near a mountain pass east of Tijuana this week are likely the remains of migrants who were attempting to cross into the United States.
Enrique Lucero, head of Tijuana’s Migrant Affairs Office, said there’s a very high probability migrants were victims of crime because the bodies were found in an area known for human smuggling.
“It’s a very dangerous route where the mountains connect with the desert,” said Lucero. “We don’t know the cause of death, but these could’ve well been people who fell into a smuggling network. You must really be careful in this area.”
The bodies were discovered early Wednesday evening by a search group dedicated to looking for missing and stranded migrants in the mountains.
According to the Baja California Attorney General’s Office, the remains discovered were in different stages of decomposition, and the bodies showed signs of violence.
Lucero Vázquez stated there is a high probability there are other bodies in the same area.
“The people involved could be victims of criminal organizations and kidnappers that smuggle migrants,” he said. “With more members of the national guard patrolling the border wall, migrants are moving farther to the east looking for a way into the United States often using more dangerous routes.”
Lucero Vázquez told reporters that lately, they are seeing more attempts by migrants to cross the border illegally as they are becoming tired of waiting for online appointments seeking interviews for asylum.
“Out of need and desperation, they fall into the hands of smugglers who are taking advantage of this lucrative trade, which now makes them as much as drug smuggling,” he said. “This type of crime has grown a lot in recent times.”