TUCSON - The bodies of two illegal border crossers have been recovered in desert areas and the status of two other desert deaths are being investigated, authorities said Monday.
The Pinal County Sheriff's Department told Border Patrol officials a man called Friday to say his son died in the desert after becoming ill in a smuggler's van crammed with 25 other illegal immigrants.
According to Border Patrol spokesman Gus Soto, the father, who is from Mexico, said the smuggler kicked him and his son out of the van, and the son died 15 hours later.
On Saturday, Border Patrol agents recovered the body of a man in his 20s about 16 miles north of Sasabe. The man had papers saying he was from Puebla, Mexico, Soto said.
Both deaths may have been heat-related, he said.
Agents also recovered human remains Friday night on the Tohono O'odham Indian Reservation that had been in the desert for months or longer.
Pinal County sheriff's officers also found another body Friday that may have been an illegal immigrant, Soto said.
Border Patrol figures show there have been at least 60 migrant deaths in Arizona through April 30 this fiscal year, which began Oct. 1. Figures for May won't be available until the end of the month.