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California Briefing / SAN DIEGO

4 face immigrant smuggling charges

September 09, 2008|Tony Perry

Four members of a Fallbrook family were charged in federal court Monday with operating what investigators called one of the longest-running illegal immigrant smuggling rings.

Maria Del Carmen Alvarez, Indalecio Alvarez-Montoya, Juan Alvarez and Patricia Marquez were charged with smuggling immigrants through the San Ysidro border crossing with phony documents and in some cases hiding them in the trunks of vehicles. Prosecutors said the ring had operated since at least 1996.

Among the charges are filing false income statements and charging smuggling fees to the immigrants' "sponsors" in the United States.

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