EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – U.S. Border Patrol agents rescued 17 undocumented immigrants from a tractor-trailer after receiving information regarding a possible smuggling scheme.
Border Patrol agents assigned to the Truth or Consequences Station received the tip on May 20, and shortly thereafter observed a tractor-trailer traveling north on Interstate 25 near Truth or Consequences, N.M.
Working in collaboration with Homeland Security Investigations and the New Mexico State Police (NMSP), border agents requested assistance to initiate a vehicle stop of the tractor-trailer.
During the vehicle stop, agents discovered 17 undocumented migrants hidden inside the cabin sleeping area after being alerted by the sound of “shuffling feet.”
All 17 migrants along with the driver were transported to the Las Cruces Border Patrol Station for
processing. HSI is investigating.
The driver, a U.S. citizen, faces criminal prosecution.
“West Texas and southern New Mexico regions have seen an increase in the groups of individuals exploited on a near-daily basis by transnational criminal organizations operating human smuggling
rings,” El Paso Sector Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez said in a statement. “Due to a tip from a concerned citizen, we were able to stop a human smuggler. This successful apprehension was made possible with the cooperation of our HSI and NMSP law enforcement partners assisting in the operation.”