EDINBURG, Texas – U.S. Border Patrol agents from the Rio Grande Valley rescued nine people, whose lives were in danger due to the reckless tactics of human smugglers, in several incidents over the weekend.
“Human smugglers are heartless individuals who treat immigrants as cargo,” said Chief Patrol Agent Manuel Padilla Jr. “They use tactics that recklessly endanger the lives of immigrants as well as the safety of our communities.”
Six individuals were rescued in four separate incidents at the Falfurrias Checkpoint on U.S. Highway 281 North. The individuals were discovered hiding in the trunks of vehicles and in a compartment on a tractor-trailer. All were detected by a Border Patrol K-9 during the initial immigration inspection. Another rescue occurred at the Sarita Checkpoint on U.S. Highway 77 North when agents found three illegal immigrants carelessly locked inside the trunk of a car.
In addition, seven United States citizens were arrested in connection with the smuggling attempts. So far for fiscal year 2016, which began Oct. 1, 2015, agents in RGV Sector have rescued more than 250 people whose lives were in danger due to a variety of circumstances.
RGV Sector urges immigrants to not jeopardize their lives by illegally entering the United States or by attempting to circumvent a checkpoint. The public is encouraged to take a stand against crime in their communities and to help save lives by reporting suspicious activity at 800-863-9382.
The Rio Grande Valley Sector is part of the Joint Task Force-West South Texas Corridor, which leverages federal, state and local resources to combat transnational criminal organizations.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.