90 Migrants Found Packed in Tractor-Trailer at Texas Border Checkpoint

Laredo Sector Border Patrol agents find 66 migrants locked in a tractor-trailer at the IH-35 Immigration Checkpoint. (Photo: U.S. Border Patrol/Laredo Sector)

Laredo Sector Border Patrol agents stopped a collection of 90 migrants from being smuggled into the U.S. interior. The cartel-connected smugglers locked 90 migrants, including five unaccompanied juveniles, inside a tractor-trailer.

Laredo North Station agents assigned to the Interstate 35 immigration checkpoint on the night of March 5 observed a gray tractor pulling a white trailer approaching for inspection. During an initial inspection, a K-9 agent alerted to the possible presence of drug or human cargo in the rear of the trailer, according to information obtained from Laredo Sector Border Patrol officials.

The agents directed the driver, a U.S. citizen, to move the rig to a secondary inspection station. There, agents conducted a search of the trailer and found 90 people locked inside. The migrants included five unaccompanied alien children, officials stated.

After removing the illegal immigrants from the trailer, the agents conducted immigration interviews and determined they came to the United States from the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico.

The agents arrested the driver, the 90 migrants, and seized the tractor-trailer. All were turned over to Homeland Security Investigations for processing and possible federal prosecution on human smuggling and illegal immigration charges.

The Interstate 35 immigration checkpoint is frequently the scene of failed human smuggling attempts. Agents frequently find large groups of migrants crammed into the rear of tractor-trailer rigs and other cargo trucks where they have no means of escape in the event of a crash or abandonment by the human smugglers.

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