Armed Mexican government personnel made unauthorized incursions into the U.S. five times in the last three months of 2005, reports the Los Angeles Times, quoting confidential Department of Homeland Security records. The crossings involved police officers or soldiers in military vehicles and were among 231 such incidents recorded by the U.S. Border Patrol in the last 10 years.
Details of the incidents emerged as authorities scrambled to investigate a dangerous confrontation Monday in Texas. Heavily armed personnel in a military-style Humvee from Mexico helped drug smugglers fleeing police escape back across the border. Reports of incursions into the U.S. by gun-toting groups of men dressed in what appeared to be military or police uniforms along the Mexican frontier have become a rallying point for advocates of illegal immigration crackdowns and tighter border security. U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Az.) said this week’s incident in Texas was “about as serious as it gets” and that dozens of reported incursions have occurred in his state.