Boat Overturns In OC Surf, 14 Illegal Immigrants Detained

NEWPORT BEACH (CBS) — Federal agents were waiting for 14 would-be immigrants when their boat overturned in the surf at Crystal Cove State Park before dawn Tuesday.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent were waiting for a northbound panga, tracked by the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard, when the flat-bottomed fishing boat overturned about 5 a.m., ICE spokeswoman Virginia Kice said.

“Fortunately, no one was killed or seriously hurt,” Kice said.

All 14 people taken into custody were Mexicans, Kice said. A 15th person got away, she said.

Even farther north, authorities picked up 15 would-be immigrants on Santa Cruz Island this past weekend.

“We’ve seen a significant surge in maritime smuggling in the last year or so,” Kice said.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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