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MCSO: Men who had eaten cactus rescued from desert

Five men who had eaten cactus to survive were rescued from the desert on Wednesday, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said.

“[Wednesday] morning, we received a 911 call from a Spanish-speaking male who stated that him and four others were lost in the desert,” said MCSO Sgt. Brandon Jones. “They had been out in the desert for about 24 hours without food or water.”

The five men ranged from 16 to 30 years old and were ill from eating a cactus in an attempt to survive, said Jones.

“We sent some deputies out to some areas that he described to us,” said Jones. “We also sent our helicopter out. Our helicopter did find them. They were sick from eating a cactus in an attempt to survive. We’re turning them over to the Border Patrol.”

It is unknown if the men are illegal immigrants.

They were found near Interstate 8 and 144th Avenue.