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An alert U.S. Border Patrol agent foiled an attempt to circumvent a checkpoint in Laredo, Texas. A stolen pickup truck and horse trailer were used in the smuggling attempt.

The incident transpired during the early morning of September 10, 2020 when an agent observed a pickup truck hauling a horse trailer inside a ranch northeast of the checkpoint. Quickly responding, the agent encountered the vehicle as it was attempting to leave the ranch through a gate.

As the agent approached the vehicle, the driver fled on foot into the nearby brush. The agent then discovered one individual in the front passenger seat and 42 individuals inside the horse trailer. They were all determined to be in the United States illegally from the countries of Mexico and Honduras. None had any personal protective equipment and were quickly medically evaluated. They were taken into custody pending further investigation. 

Both the pickup truck and horse trailer were found to have been reported stolen and were turned over to the Texas Department of Public Safety. 

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Laredo Sector Chief Patrol Agent Matthew J. Hudak said,

“The photos in this incident are clear evidence that smugglers have no regard for the safety of the people they are smuggling and for the public they are putting at risk to potential exposure to COVID-19. None of the illegal immigrants arrested had personal protective equipment and were packed close together for an extended period of time. Whether in a remote ranch area like this or within the city, our agents remain vigilant to stop all threats along our border.”