Rio Grande Sector Border Patrol agents disrupted multiple human smuggling incidents–including the rescue of 26 migrants from stash houses. They are frequently raped, beaten, and further extorted by groups often connected to Mexican cartels.
Rio Grande City Station Border Patrol agents received a tip Monday about a group of migrants being held in a stash house. The agents requested assistance from the Starr County Sheriff’s Office and raided the house in Rio Grande City, Texas. A search yielded eight illegal immigrants. Agents determined the migrants’ nationalities to be Mexican and Honduran, according to federal officials.
Over the weekend, agents in the same area discovered two additional stash houses located in Rio Grande City and Weslaco. Agents fount 18 migrants from El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico. Officials did not report any arrests of human smugglers.
Elsewhere in the sector, Rio Grande Valley Sector agents disrupted 27 additional smuggling attempts during a three-day period. The interdictions resulted in the arrests of 41 human smugglers with 81 migrants, officials stated.
On Saturday morning, agents working near Sullivan City received a tip about a vehicle picking up a group of illegal immigrants, officials stated. A search resulted in the discovery of an abandoned vehicle. Agents also located six migrants.
That same day, McAllen Station Border Patrol agents received another tip about a white sedan picking up a group of migrants near Los Ebanos, Texas. Agents again found an abandoned vehicle that became stuck on railroad tracks, officials reported. The agents searched the area and found five people who fled from the vehicle. Some of the migrants identified the driver and a passenger who carried out the smuggling operation. Agents determined both to be U.S. citizen juveniles. The other three people apprehended were identified as migrants not legally present in the U.S.
During August, the Rio Grande Valley Sector continued to lead the nation in the apprehension of migrants. These agents apprehended 22,356 migrants — nearly half of the 50,693 along the entire southwest border with Mexico, according to the August Southwest Border Migration Report.
Of those, the agents apprehended 13,537 Family Unit Aliens, 1,969 Unaccompanied Alien Children, and 6,850 Single Adults. This represents nearly a 40 percent drop from the previous month’s sector total of 36,855. However, the apprehensions are still 34 percent higher than August 2018’s total apprehensions for the sector.