Nine foreign nationals were detained crossing into Canada between the North Portal and Northgate ports of entry on the western North Dakota/Canadian border on April 14, the RCMP said.
People who are self-selecting by walking into Canada may have an impact on the total number of refugees accepted from outside the country, he said.
The arrests were made after a four-month joint investigation in the Saskatchewan region.
Last month, the RCMP intercepted 887 people crossing between official border points, with 644 of them crossing into Quebec. All of the asylum seekers are from West Africa but police would not give their nationalities, genders or ages. They have filed refugee claims and are living in Canada while they wait for their claims to be decided, police said.
The following day, the RCMP, with the assistance of Canada Border Services Agency and Regina Police Service, conducted a search warrant on a residence in Regina.
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RCMP received the warning of a possible imminent alleged human smuggle after Canadian Border Services was alerted by U.S Border patrol of a suspect in an on-going investigation crossing the border. Advocates on both sides of the border have long urged the Canadian government to suspend the agreement, warning that it leaves asylum seekers looking to enter Canada from the U.S. with little choice but to resort to hazardous journeys.
Two asylum seekers claiming to be from the Democratic Republic of Congo cross the border into Canada from the US on March 28 near Hemmingford, Que.
She is scheduled to appear in provincial court on 15 May.
Critics have blamed the Safe Third Country agreement between Canada and the US for rise in border jumping. Some asylum seekers have attempted to make the journey in the dead of night in freezing cold conditions to avoid running into law enforcement.
It will be months before it's known whether those who've entered Canada between border points in recent months are in fact granted asylum. "They're vulnerable and may be taken advantage of by people looking to gain financially from their situation".