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24 Dominican returnees who tried to arrive illegally in Puerto Rico

The US Coast Guard in Puerto Rico announced on Thursday the repatriation of 24 Dominican migrants after intercepting their boat off the coast of Aguadilla, in the west of the island.

The vessel was detected during a routine patrol by the crew of a Maritime Control, Customs and Border Protection aircraft last Sunday, 18 miles west of the coast of the Puerto Rican municipality of Aguadilla.

After the sighting, Coast Guard Joseph Napier intercepted the 30-foot smuggling boat, which was carrying 25 people.

Of the total of migrants, 24 were taken back to the Dominican Republic yesterday and one remains in custody to face a federal process on charges of attempted illegal re-entry to the United States.

The Coast Guard frequently intercepts boats with Dominican or Haitian migrants who try to reach the United States illegally in the Mona Channel, which separates Puerto Rico from the Dominican Republic.

On December 24, the federal agency reported the repatriation of another 58 Dominican migrants located in two boats also near the Aguadilla coast, in northwestern Puerto Rico.

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