This is True
bullet  Be Very, Very Quiet

The story is amazing enough-- but adding the photo really drives it home. From the 29 July 2001 issue.

(I highly recommend reading the story before scrolling down to see the photo. Really -- trust me!)

Sit On It!

It's not known whether Enrique Aquilar Canchola, 42, thought his disguise would work, but it definitely didn't. The Mexican national tried to cross the Mexico-U.S. border into San Ysidro, Calif., disguised as a car seat. A U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service inspector discovered the unusual camouflage when he checked the back of a van when it tried to sneak Canchola over the border. (London Times) ...He agreed to it after learning immigrants are often treated like furniture.

OK, you read the story first, right?

Then only now you should scroll down to look at the photo:


No, Please -- Don't Get Up!
[Hold very, very still and no one will be able to see you.] Enrique Aquilar Canchola, 42, photographed in the disguise he used to try -- unsuccessfully -- to sneak across the border from Mexico to the U.S. at the San Ysidro crossing, which can be seen in the background. (U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service photo.)

5 Comments on This Entry

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Posted by Brian (Canada) on May 19, 2012:

I first saw this guy in my Canadian Law textbook in the immigration section.

I'd like to know more about this guy though. Why is he remaining so calm? Did he have the armrest and head covered originally?


I have wondered this too. My guess is, he was uncovered by Border Patrol officers, and then asked to sit still so they could get a photo. -rc

Posted by Bergman, Seattle WA on January 5, 2013:

I find myself wondering:

Is he any relation to one Horace Slughorn?

Posted by Emily (Canada) on March 23, 2013:

We covered this in geography. Enrique is from Zacatecas. He has a wife and two young daughters who are frequently ill. Last time, he tried to swim across the polluted Rio Grande at night.

Enrique sliced off the top of the leather seat and wriggled inside the cushion while his friend drove the car. He almost suffocated. He was caught at the San Ysidro crossing.

And yes, 'Bergman', he does bear an extraordinary resemblance, doesn't he? People-who-can-turn-into-armchairs-and-carseats-unite!

Posted by Simon, England on August 28, 2014:

Found this by chance and now use it as part of my unit at school on migration. [I am a geography teacher.]

Posted by England, Bucks on November 6, 2014:

This guy...We learned about him in geography, but how did he fit? And did anyone fall for the disguise and sit on him? He must have been pretty desperate. I feel sorry for him. :(

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