Laredo Sector Border Patrol agents rescued more than 50 migrants from dangerous conditions in three separate incidents. Two involved packing migrants amidst cargo inside a tractor-trailer while the third involved 13 people stuffed in an SUV.
In the first incident, agents assigned to the Border Patrol Checkpoint on Interstate 35 observed a tractor-trailer approaching on May 30. During questioning, the agents became suspicious and referred the driver to a secondary inspection station for further investigation. A K-9 agent conducted a walk around inspection and alerted to the presence of concealed humans or drugs, according to information obtained from Laredo Sector officials by Breitbart Texas.
The agents carried out a visual inspection where they found 35 illegal immigrants packed inside the cabin of the tractor, officials said. Agents took the migrants, from Guatemala and Mexico, into custody. They also arrested the U.S. citizen driver and seized his truck.
“These criminal organizations view these individuals as mere commodities without regard for their safety, Laredo Sector Assistant Chief Patrol Agent Gabriel Acosta said in a written statement. “The blatant disregard for human life will not be tolerated. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to disrupt and dismantle these organizations and prosecute those responsible.”
Laredo Station agents assigned to patrol the border town’s south side on June 4 noticed erratic driving behaviors involving an SUV. Agents determined it appeared the driver was smuggling a large load of illegal immigrants inside his vehicle.
The driver stopped his vehicle after Border Patrol agents activated their emergency lights and siren. A quick visual inspection revealed 13 migrants packed into the vehicle.
An investigation revealed 10 illegal immigrants and three human smugglers who were packed tightly in the vehicle. These conditions put the vehicle in an overweight situation that could be extremely dangerous in an emergency, officials told Breitbart Texas.
The agents took all 13 people into custody on immigration violations and human smuggling charges.
That same day, agents assigned to the Highway 59 checkpoint found six more illegal immigrants being smuggled. In this case, the human cargo were stashed inside cabinets being transported by the truck. The migrants were placed in danger due to the unsafe transportation conditions, extreme heat, and the lack of air circulation inside the truck’s cargo area. In the event of an accident, or being abandoned by their human smugglers, the migrants had no way to escape from the back of the box truck.
In this case, all six migrants came to the U.S. from Mexico. Agents arrested the driver, a U.S. citizen, and seized the truck. The migrants will be processed on immigration violations, officials said.
“This rescue illustrates how Border Patrol works not only to enforce laws, but to protect the sanctity of life along the border,” Laredo Sector Assistant Division Chief Greg Burwell. “We will always work diligently to disrupt and degrade criminal organizations that constantly put people’s lives in danger. Also, we will do whatever it takes to save lives and prevent people from being subjected to dangerous, deplorable situations.”