CORPUS CHRISTI (Covering Katy News)- A 23-year-old legal permanent resident of Katy has been convicted of transporting illegal aliens by hiding them in furniture.
On Dec. 10, 2018, Yabar Ayan Portes-Arevalo approached the primary inspection lane of the Border Patrol checkpoint near Sarita. He was driving a Ford F-150 pickup with a couch and dresser loaded in the bed of the truck wrapped in plastic. During a routine inspection, Portes-Arevalo became visibly nervous, at which time agents conducted an x-ray examination of the vehicle which showed what agents called “abnormalities inside the furniture.”
Border patrol agents removed the plastic and discovered three undocumented aliens hidden in the couch and three more inside the dresser. The dresser had been nailed shut.
Porters-Arevalo entered a guilty plea on Tuesday to transporting illegal aliens within the United States. Sentencing has been set for May 20, 2019, before Senior U.S. District Judge John Rainey.
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At the time, Portes-Arevalo will face up to five years imprisonment and a $250,000 maximum possible fine. He could also lose his status as a legal permanent resident.
He was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.
Border patrol conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Cody Barnes is prosecuting the case.