Crash derails illegal aliens

Five sent to hospital after three-car accident, minor injuries reported

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A three-car accident north of the intersection of Ninth Street and Yampa Avenue netted some cuts and bruises, and more than a dozen illegal immigrants on Wednesday.

Fourteen illegal immigrants from Mexico were traveling north on Yampa Avenue in two cars when the lead car, a white Chevrolet Caprice, rear-ended a Ford Taurus driven by Phillip Rogers, Jr., 27, in front of Craig Middle School. The Caprice then swerved into the southbound lane, where it ran head-on into an Ford F-250 pickup, according to Sgt. Bill Leonard of the Craig Police Department.

Both Rogers and Randall Dial, 41, who was driving the pickup, were treated and released from the hospital, and three of the immigrants were also treated and released. All suffered from lacerations and bumps, Leonard said.

"The driver of the Caprice jumped into the second car and continued north. The six passengers of the car fled behind the middle school," Leonard said. "The other carload of illegals was intercepted in Baggs by the Baggs Police Department, and taken into custody."

The eight immigrants were transferred back to Craig after their capture in Wyoming.

INS officer, Doug Anderson, is preparing to transport 12 of the illegal immigrants to Denver. From there they will be taken back to Mexico, Leonard said.

The driver of the Caprice, Pedro Lopez-Barrera, will going to be held in Craig and charged with failure to remain at the scene of an accident with injuries, careless driving causing bodily injury, operating an uninsured motor vehicle, failure to drive in one lane, failure to notify the police of an accident and for driving an unregistered vehicle.

The driver of the second car, Philimone Juarez-Gonzalez, was also charged with failure to remain at the scene of an accident, being an accessory to a crime and failure to notify police of an accident.

The two are being held in the Moffat County Jail, each on a $750 bond, but paying the bond will not ensure their release. They are both on an INS hold, which prohibits the release of illegal immigrants charged with a crime.

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