According to the Los Angeles Times and other news outlets, the faux government van in which they were traveling, as well as its altered government license plates, tipped off the border agents.
Reported the Times, [t]he immigrants all had Marine-style haircuts and the name tag "Perez" on their camouflage uniforms, U.S. Marine Corps officials said."
The uniforms the illegals wore all bore the same name: "Perez." Why the 13 Einsteins didn't use different names we are not given to know.
The Times reports that trying to cross the border in disguise or using some other ruse is not uncommon:
Over the years, immigrants have disguised themselves as hard-hatted contractors and utility repairmen, and smugglers have painted and placed decals on cars to look like Border Patrol or other government vehicles.
Yet a more serious threat than carloads of Mexicans trying to jump the border in phony disguises and vehicles are the tunnels that run under the border and are used to smuggle not only illegal aliens but also large quantities of illegal drugs.
Just months ago, Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agents stopped a truck leaving an alleged toilet paper warehouse in Otay Mesa, Calif. It contained 20,000 pounds of marijuana. On raiding the warehouse, agents found another 32,000 pounds of the illegal drug.
Then they found something else: an 1,800-foot tunnel running to Mexico equipped with tracks and pulleys, Fox News reported in November.
According to Fox:
Since Sept. 2001, 113 tunnels have been discovered -— a 63 percent increase in just the last two years. ICE agent Tim Durst said they are becoming an increasing threat with the “growing presence of law enforcement above ground. ...”
Seventy-one smuggling tunnels have been uncovered in Nogales, Arizona, with San Diego, California, a close second, counting 34 in both Otay Mesa and San Ysidro. The tunnels are "golden goose eggs" and if they're completed and become operational, they are of great value to smugglers, Durst said.
Photo: A reporter takes a photo of a map showing where arrests were made in San Diego County during a news conference held to announce a criminal complaint in San Diego, July 23, 2010.: AP Images