Florida Highway Patrol Assist in Apprehension of 17 Chinese Nationals Following Illegal Landing in Key Largo

Press Release

~Florida Operation Vigilant Sentry Continues to Protect Florida Border from Illegal Entry~

KEY LARGO, FLA.—Today, Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) announced the capture and detention of 20 undocumented arrivals who landed in Key Largo by boat. On October 22nd, FHP responded to Mile Marker 109 in Monroe County at the request of U.S. Border Patrol to set up a secure perimeter and to assist in the apprehension of the suspects.

The undocumented arrivals consisted of 17 subjects from China (11 adult males, six adult females) and three from Ecuador (all adult males).

“While the Biden Administration has completely failed at border security, our Florida Highway Patrol troopers stand ready to protect the U.S. border, whether in the southwestern United States or here off the coast of Florida,” said Executive Director Dave Kerner. “This detention of Chinese nationals shows how an open border allows individuals from enemy nations to enter our communities.”

On January 6, 2023, Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order #23-03, saying in a press release, “As the negative impacts of Biden’s lawless immigration policies continue unabated, the burden of the Biden administration’s failure falls on local law enforcement who lack the resources to deal with the crisis. That is why I am activating the National Guard and directing state resources to help alleviate the strain on local resources. When Biden continues to ignore his legal responsibilities, we will step in to support our communities.”

Executive Order #23-03 otherwise known as Operation Vigilant Sentry, not only activates the Florida National Guard but also directs state law enforcement agencies to provide resources to support local governments responding to the increasing number of migrants landing in the Florida Keys.

After recovery, the U.S. Border Patrol took the individuals into custody to be processed.


The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) provides highway safety and security through excellence in service, education, and enforcement. Learn more on our website.

The Florida Highway Patrol strives to achieve core values of courtesy, service, and protection. It is FHP’s job to help ensure the safety and welfare of millions of Florida’s residents and visitors every day.
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