Mexican Coyotes Abandon 48 Migrants in Winter Storm near Border, 2 Dead

Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents rescued five illegal aliens from freezing in the Santa Rita Mountains. (Photo: U.S. Border Patrol/Tucson Sector)
File Photo: U.S. Border Patrol/Tucson Sector

Mexican cartel-connected human smugglers abandoned several groups of migrants in freezing conditions near the Texas border with Mexico. Agents rescued 48 migrants and found two others who died after being abandoned in the snow, high winds, and freezing temperatures.

Big Bend Sector Border Patrol agents conducted multiple search and rescue operations in a 48-hour period beginning on December 30. The rescue operations took place during winter storm conditions that dropped upward of 24 inches of snow in some areas, according to information obtained from Big Bend Sector Border Patrol officials.

Beginning on Wednesday, Big Bend Sector agents, agents from the Special Operations Detachments from neighboring sectors, and CBP Air and Marine Operations agents teamed up with state and local law enforcement officers to rescue 48 migrants. Officials said human smugglers abandoned the migrants without shelter from the extreme winter weather conditions.

Officials said several of the migrants required medical attention due to exposure to the frigid conditions. Two other people suspected of having entered the U.S. illegally were found dead.

The deaths are being investigation by a joint operation with CBP, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and local sheriff’s office officials.

“This is another example of how human smugglers recklessly abandon individuals leaving them in peril,” CBP officials said in a written statement.

The winter storm conditions hampered agents’ ability to carry out patrol operations throughout its vast territory that includes the Sierra Blanca and the Sanderson Station. Officials reported freezing conditions, high winds, and snowfall accumulations of more than two feet in some places.

Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior news contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s Sunday-morning talk show, What’s Your Point? Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX, Parler @BobPrice, and Facebook.

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