At least nine people -- including seven illegal immigrants -- were in custody Thursday after smugglers using a panga-style boat came ashore in Southern California, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said.
The smugglers landed with the illegal immigrants on the shores of Laguna Beach at around 7 a.m., authorities said.
Ralph DeSio, a Border Patrol spokesman, said four Mexican nationals and three Chinese nationals were among the illegal immigrants who were detained, according to the Los Angeles Times. He said one of the smugglers was a U.S. citizen and the other had overstayed his visa, but authorities didn’t clarify the person’s country of origin.
The smugglers were waiting in a vehicle nearby to transport the smuggled immigrants, Laguna Beach police said.
Police were still searching for at least six passengers who they believe were on the boat, DeSio said. Laguna Beach police posted a video of the boat coming ashore.