BURLINGTON — Eight illegal immigrants from Mexico — including one that has been caught unlawfully inside the United States at least five times — have been nabbed by the U.S. Border Patrol in Essex County, federal court records show. Josie De Los Santos Maza-Perez, 53, appeared briefly for his initial hearing in U.S. District Court in Burlington on Thursday afternoon. Federal Magistrate Judge Kevin J. Doyle approved a request by the prosecution for him to be detained pending further proceedings. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael P. Drescher said in court papers that Mara-Perez indicated he was planning to pay $4,000 to those helping him sneak into the United States, and he was headed to New York. Drescher said that was evidence that he had the financial means to abscond within the U.S. Maza-Perez is facing a charge of being an illegal immigrant that had been previously removed from the United States and found inside the country again without the prior approval of the Secretary of Homeland Security. Doyle set a probable cause hearing for July 20, but Maza-Perez will lose it if a federal grand jury indicts him in the interim. Maza-Perez was among five men and three women found by U.S. Border Patrol Agents in a black 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe in Canaan at about 2:30 a.m. Monday, records show. A spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office said there was no comment on whether the other seven were released or if they are facing removal hearings.
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