Mexican Trucker With Fake I.D. Busted Smuggling 26 People in Big Rig
Salton City, CA – On Wednesday evening, a Mexican national suspected of smuggling 26 illegal immigrants in a tractor-trailer was arrested.
El Centro Sector U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) says the incident occurred at approximately 9:40 p.m., when a man drove a tractor-trailer to the Highway 86 immigration checkpoint.
During primary inspection, CBP agents conducted an immigration check on the driver.
During the inspection, a Border Patrol canine detection team alerted to the rear cargo area of the trailer, CBP says.
The driver and was referred to secondary for further inspection.
Agents inspected the cargo area of the truck and discovered 26 individuals inside the the trailer.
CBP says the people were locked inside the trailer with no safety restraints and with no way to extricate themselves from the inside.
All the occupants were unharmed and safely removed, but CBP officials warn it could have ended in tragedy.
“The undocumented immigrants were locked and trapped inside this tractor-trailer in below 45 degree weather with no safety restraints,” said Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez. “This smuggling organization had no regard for the safety of the people they were smuggling. Fortunately, our agents were able to remove them from that potentially life threatening situation.”
Further, CBP reports the 32-year-old truck driver presented a California driver’s license as his own.
However, that document was later determined to be a fake.
The driver was determined to be a Mexican national illegally present in the United States.
He, along with all 26 people being smuggled, which include one male and one female juveniles, were placed under arrest.
For more on recent big rig border news, click HERE.
Photo courtesy of CBP