U.S. Trucker Arrested After 149 People Discovered Locked Inside Semi-Trailer
Laredo, TX – A trucker was arrested last week along with 149 people in a major big rig human smuggling bust.
According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the incident occurred at the Interstate Highway 35 checkpoint on Friday, April 16.
Officials said a commercial tractor-trailer approached the checkpoint and agents conducted a non-intrusive scan of the trailer.
Multiple anomalies were discovered inside the trailer.
Agents then opened the seal on the semi-trailer and discovered a total of 149 illegal immigrants locked inside.
CBP indicated none of the individuals were wearing personal protective equipment (PPE).
Officials provided PPE and each person was medically screened.
Additionally, the individuals were determined to be in the U.S. illegally from the countries of Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Venezuela, El Salvador, Peru, and Ecuador.
They were all placed under arrest along with the driver, a U.S. citizen, pending further investigation by Special Agents of Homeland Security Investigations.
Authorities seized both the tractor and trailer.
CBP continues to stress they are seeing a surge of human smugglers using big rigs to transport people illegally across the southern border.
“Human smugglers continue to have no regard for the safety and health of the people they exploit for profit,” the CBP said.