A Jordanian man will spend three years behind bars for smuggling Yemenis into the United States from Mexico, the Department of Justice said Tuesday.
Moayad Heider Mohammad Aldairi, 31, pleaded guilty earlier this year to smuggling at least six Yemeni nationals across the Texas border with Mexico and into the U.S. in exchange for a fee during the second half of 2017, a DOJ press release said.
Aldairi admitted to transporting the Yemenis from Monterrey, Mexico, to a border town, where he directed them to cross the Rio Grande River into Texas. He also provided some of them with construction hard hats and reflective vests to help them blend in after crossing.
“Aldairi endangered our national security by smuggling unvetted aliens across our border into the United States,” said Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “The Department of Justice and our law enforcement partners will steadfastly pursue investigations and prosecutions to disrupt smugglers like Aldairi and end the risk they pose to our safety.”
U.S. Attorney John Bash of the Western District of Texas said the case “vividly illustrates how border security is a key component of national security.”
“We simply must know the identities of every individual crossing our southern border, particularly those who are nationals of countries where terrorist organizations operate freely,” Bash said.