Border Patrol agents in Texas obstructed several smuggling attempts and detained many immigrants this week after discovering stash houses and tractor trailers smuggling people.
Police in the Rio Grande Valley district found eight immigrants in a tracker trailer east of Victoria, Texas on Wednesday, after being alerted to it by Wharton County sheriff’s deputies, according to the Customs and Border Protection. Two immigrants received injuries in the trailer from a crash and were taken to a local hospital. The CBP agents determined the immigrants in the truck illegally crossed the border and are now being held at the Corpus Christi Border Patrol Station.
In another incident, Border Patrol agents stopped a tractor trailer at the Javier Vega Jr. checkpoint. At the checkpoint, they asked the driver for his citizenship information and sent the truck to a secondary inspection area after K9 units alerted the agents to something suspicious in its cargo hold. A search of the vehicle revealed 52 undocumented migrants hiding inside. The agents arrested the driver and took the 52 undocumented immigrants into custody. In a third incident this week in Sullivan City, Texas, Border Patrol agents busted 29 undocumented immigrants that were hiding in two stash houses, according to a CBP release. Officers found a group of 15 men near the City being loaded into a vehicle, but the men fled into a bush when they saw the agents approach. They were arrested and taken to the McCallen border station to be processed.
In a final incident this week, near Roma, Texas on Monday, Border Patrol agents found 14 undocumented migrants inside a stash house. Border Patrol Chief Brian Hastings said his agents have busted 202 stash houses this fiscal year in the Rio Grande Valley. Laredo, Texas Democrat Mayor, Pete Saenz, gave some comments about the stash houses in an interview with the Washington Examiner, “The other places you see a lot of families, but here it’s more on the criminal side. Laredo is relatively safe. It is. But if we don’t correct this stash house and tractor-trailers activity that we have with these folks, this could escalate and possibly become a war zone … between rival gangs. These local gangs that we have here — it’s an extension of these Mexican cartels working through these local gangs that we have,” said Saenz. “We’ve had a stash house surge. If we don’t get to it now, it will only escalate.”
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