Migrants Placed in Danger by Smugglers

US Border Patrol agents made 19 arrests from three migrant smuggling events and seized almost 500 pounds of marijuana.

On August 29, RGV agents attempted to initiate a vehicle stop on an Isuzu SUV near Linn. The driver failed to yield and led agents on a vehicle pursuit that ended just before the Falfurrias Border Patrol Checkpoint. The vehicle came to a stop and the occupants bailed out. Additional agents and a CBP Air and Marine Operations helicopter responded and apprehended seven subjects. They were all transported to the station.

On August 30, agents attempted to initiate an immigration inspection on the occupants of another vehicle near Linn. As soon as agents turned on their emergency equipment, the driver veered off the road and crashed into some trees. The occupants absconded from the vehicle. Agents apprehended eight noncitizens, none of which were injured. The driver was not located.

That same day, a Rio Grande City Border Patrol Station (RGC) camera operator observed subjects load into a Nissan Xterra near the Rio Grande in Roma and depart the area. Agents responded to search the area and located the suspected vehicle after it had been involved in a single vehicle rollover. Agents encountered three non-citizens, and the Legally Admitted Permanent Resident suspected driver as he was running away from the crashed vehicle. Emergency Medical Services, Roma Police and Fire Departments, and Texas Department of Public Safety responded to assist a female migrant who was injured during the accident and the other subjects. The migrants were transported to the hospital for evaluation and treatment. The uninjured 17-year-old driver was turned over to Starr County Sheriff’s Office to face state charges of smuggling of persons causing bodily injury.

Less than two hours later, RGC agents responded to a suspected narcotics load vehicle in Fronton. Agents encountered the vehicle abandoned with five bundles of marijuana in the vehicle. The driver was not located. The seized marijuana weighed almost 500 pounds and is valued at 380,000 USD.