Two Syrian men have been charged by a federal grand jury with impersonating U.S. citizens after they were discovered transporting a Mexican who had illegally crossed the border
Ala Salem Mamoud Al-Kurdi and Mohamed Tamman Nakchgandi were stopped by Border Patrol Feb. 18 southwest of Tucson, Ariz., according to the criminal complaint.
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In the back seat of their Cadillac, the agents found an illegal Mexican immigrant who admitted to crossing the border three days earlier, the Arizona Republic reported.
According to court records, Kurdi, 25, and Nakchgandi, 24, claimed they were naturalized U.S. citizens born in Syria. Agents discovered, however, they were in the country illegally. Nakchgandi overstayed a temporary visa issued in 1999 and had a canceled employment-authorization card.
The two men were arraigned Thursday in U.S. District Court in Tucson and are being held in federal custody until trial, the Arizona paper said.