Laredo North Station agents apprehended several individuals during a failed human smuggling attempt involving a commercial rental truck on Interstate 35 (I-35), north of Laredo Sector’s immigration checkpoint.
The event occurred during the mid-afternoon on June 13, when agents observed a U-Haul moving truck traveling north on the west access road near the 30 mile-marker of I-35. Agents initiated a vehicle stop and discovered 27 undocumented individuals in the unventilated cargo area of the moving truck. The temperature inside the cargo compartment was a sweltering 106 degrees Fahrenheit.
None of the individuals were wearing personal protective equipment (PPE). They were medically screened and provided PPE. The individuals were from the countries of Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras. They were all placed under arrest along with the driver and passenger, both U.S. citizens, pending further investigation.
“Though human smugglers may try different ways to attempt to avoid detection, our agents remain vigilant and committed to our border security and national security mission”, Chief Patrol Agent Matthew Hudak said.
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, transporting large groups of people without PPE in close and often dangerous quarters, endangers the individuals and the safety of our Nation. Human smugglers continue to have no regard for the safety and health of the people they exploit for profit. Laredo Sector Border Patrol agents focus on their enduring mission priorities of countering terrorism, combatting transnational crime, securing the border, protecting revenue, and facilitating lawful trade and travel.