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Border Patrol encounters large Cuban migrant landing in Florida Keys 

The migrant landing is the second one to reach the Florida Keys this week

Migrant ship
Migrant ship | Shutterstock

July 5, 2023 7:59am

Updated: July 5, 2023 7:59am

Border Patrol agents on Tuesday morning encountered a group of undocumented Cuban migrants that had just arrived by boat to the Florida Keys, according to a top U.S. Border Patrol official. 

Border Patrol agents responded to a report of a migrant landing in the Middle Keys city of Marathon at around 5 a.m., according to a tweet posted by Chief Patrol Agent Walter N. Slosar. 

When authorities arrived, they encountered a group of 32 migrants—27 adult males and 5 adult females, said Adam Hoffner, division chief of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Miami Sector.

The migrants received medical assistance and were placed in federal custody to be processed accordingly and removed from the country.

The boat the migrants arrived on was seized by authorities. The investigation is still ongoing. 

The migrant landing is the second one to reach the Florida Keys this week. On Monday, Border Patrol agents responded to a migrant landing at Truman Waterfront Park. Three Cuban migrants who had been traveling on a rustic vessel were apprehended by authorities and processed accordingly. 

“There has not been any recent migrant landings in the Florida Keys,” Hoffner said on Monday after the U.S. Border Patrol ramped up efforts to prevent landing after the numbers significantly increased in January. 

In early January, at least 500 migrants arrived in small boats along the Florida Keys over the course of several days, in what authorities described as a “crisis.” 

Over one single weekend, 300 migrants made their way to Dry Tortugas National Park, 110 kilometers west of Key West.

The park was closed so that police and medical personnel could evaluate the migrants before taking them to Key West. Separately, 160 migrants arrived in boats in other areas of the Florida Keys over the New Year's weekend, authorities said.

The following week, 30 people from two new groups of migrants were found in the Middle Keys, the Associated Press reported.