Fourteen of the 17 people detained in the shooting of an Arizona sheriff's deputy in south-central Arizona are suspected illegal immigrants, the Arizona Republic reports.

Pinal County Sheriff's Deputy Louis Puroll was shot on Friday with an AK-47 during a patrol of a rugged desert area that's frequently traveled by drug and human smugglers.

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu said he worried the shooting is a sign of more violence from Mexican drug cartels spilling into the U.S., because cartel members are now firing of police.

Helicopters with night-vision equipment and more than 200 officers, including SWAT teams, from 13 agencies participated in the recue of Purell and the search for the shooters.

The shooting comes a week after Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signed on the nation's toughest immigration laws.

"Our thoughts & prayers go out to the Pinal County Deputy shot during a stop," Brewer wrote in a Twitter message. "Contrary to what some leaders say, our borders are not secure."

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