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Authorities arrest 15 after panga boat washes ashore near Point Loma

Officials searched the area by helicopter, boat and jet ski after lifeguards reported seeing a small vessel make landfall near Sunset Cliffs Blvd. and Ladera St.

SAN DIEGO — U.S. Border Patrol arrested 15 people after a panga boat washed ashore on the  near Point Loma Monday morning

Lifeguards responded shortly after 7 a.m. after receiving reports of the vessel in the surf south of Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego Fire-Rescue spokeswoman Monica Munoz said. 

Officials searched the area by helicopter, boat, and jet ski, looking to see if anyone else associated with the panga was on the beach or in the water.

USBP agents set up a perimeter and arrested two people who had climbed up the cliffs from the beach. The remaining 13 people stayed on the beach.  The rising tide caused the waters to approach the people left stranded. 

Agents determined that 12 Mexican men, two Mexican women and one Honduran man, ranging from 19-57 years of age, were aboard the panga boat and that all 15 were illegally present in the U.S.  

The group of 15 were taken to a local Border Patrol station for further processing.

 The boat will be seized by Air and Marine Operation.

Credit: U.S. Border Patrol | San Diego Sector

Editors note: The number of people involved was updated from 13 to 15 after the initial posting.