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Boaters Found After Overnight Search

BRANFORD, Conn. -- Three boaters who were rescued after an overnight search in Long Island sound may be illegal immigrants, police said.

The boaters had been missing for more than six hours before they were found adrift south of Branford early Monday.

Authorities Question Rescued Boaters' IDs

"We just come to fishing, and, I mean, it wasn't take that long," said Juan Lopez. "We was there whole night."
An official told Eyewitness News that the Coast Guard received a call at about 12:30 a.m. from the group of boaters reporting that their boat's battery had died. That call prompted the hours-long search.

Lt. Paul Vance, of the Connecticut State Police, said that State Police Trooper 1 helicopter spotted the boaters from the air and directed tmembers of the Coast Guard to them.

A Coast Guard official said all three boaters appeared to be in good condition. Their 20-foot motorboat was towed to shore in Branford, and they were checked by medical professionals.

Branford police said that the rescued men, identified as Juan Lopez, 28, of East Haven; his cousin, Antonio Lopez, 30, of New Haven; and Demetrio Guerrerro, 27, could not produce valid identification after being pulled to the shore.

"They showed us these IDs, and they are not valid," said Lt. Kevin Halloran, of the Branford Police Department. "Apparently, they are three illegal immigrants. We're going to get in touch with INS and take it from there."

Rescued Boaters May Be Illegal Immigrants

ICE is still conducting their investigation and looking for solid clues to whether these people are legal or not.


· Premium Member
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When I was a teenager my father had a home in Islamarado the Keys. Boats like this would wash up all the time. One day we were driving down the Street and my father pulled to the side of the road and said get a typical teen I was hesitant just wanting to go fishing...he nearly dragged me down to the shoreline where a boat just like that had washed up...he said " you see that boat 3 people died and many others almost did to come to the greatest Country in the World " he wasnt condoning them coming here but letting me know how good we have it..I never forgot that day...
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