US Customs and Border Protection officers thought there was something amiss about a white Nissan Juke when it tried to cross from Mexico to California Saturday night. Sure enough, after a secondary inspection involving an X-ray-like machine, officers popped the trunk of the car transporting LAPD officer Carlos Curiel Quezada Jr., 34, and Angelica Godinez, 31, and found Antanasio Perez-Avalos, 26, in the spare-tire compartment, the Los Angeles Times reports. Trunk or not, Perez-Avalos "is a Mexican citizen with no legal ability to enter the United States," US Customs officials say, per the Times. Quezada and Godinez were both charged with "bringing in a person without presenting them to an appropriate immigration officer at a port of entry," the criminal complaint reads.
"It's a very serious act of misconduct if it's true," says LAPD Chief Charlie Beck, per NBC San Diego. Both Quezada and Godinez have had their fair share of issues before. Godinez has two DUI convictions, while Quezada, who's been with the LAPD for a decade, is on probation there after a 2014 DUI charge, NBC reports. It doesn't sound like he's been smuggling tons of cash across the border: He reportedly told the judge in federal court yesterday he couldn't pay a lawyer, so the judge assigned him a public defender, per KTLA 5. Quezada and Godinez were out on $20,000 bail each by yesterday, ABC 7 notes; Quezada is on paid leave until the investigation ends and will be back in court April 9 for his arraignment. In the interim, his release is conditioned on him living with his parents, turning over his passport, and not being allowed to drink alcohol, KTLA 5 reports. (This alleged meth smuggler pulled into the wrong parking lot.)