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Woman tries to sneak into U.S. at Arizona border inside suitcase

PHOENIX (Reuters) - A Thai woman has been caught trying to sneak into the United States from Mexico while curled up inside a suitcase in a sport-utility vehicle at a border crossing in Nogales, Arizona, a U.S. border protection official said on Tuesday.

"Rarely do we see something like this. You can imagine the (border) officers' surprise when they came upon this woman crammed inside a suitcase, but there she was," said Edith Serrano, a spokeswoman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

The woman was discovered on the morning of December 30 in a Honda SUV driven by a 56-year-old Phoenix man, but U.S. Customs and Border Protection first announced the stop on Monday.

The Thai woman, who was in a soft-sided suitcase under a pile of clothes, was turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said Serrano, as was the driver of the SUV, which was seized.

(Reporting by David Schwartz, Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Gunna Dickson)

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