Texas sheriff’s deputies found a group of 25 migrants locked inside a horse trailer following a police pursuit early Monday morning. The pursuit took place in Zavala County near the Texas border with Mexico.
Zavala County Sheriff’s Office deputies attempted to stop a vehicle on a remote highway leading away from the border. Authorities believed the vehicle, a newer Chevrolet pick-up truck pulling a large horse trailer, might be involved in criminal activity. In a sign that their hunch was correct, the driver refused to yield to the deputy’s emergency lights and a vehicle pursuit began. When the vehicle finally stopped, the deputy found 25 migrants in the enclosed horse trailer.
In what has become an all-too-common occurrence, the migrant smuggler led authorities in the county, located just 30 miles from the Rio Grande, on a pursuit that endangered the lives of the deputies, the commuting public, and the migrants as well.
As the pursuit unfolded, a nearby Texas Highway Patrol trooper joined in to assist in the arrest. The migrants were found concealed in the enclosed trailer which hindered their escape. The driver, however, managed to escape from the pursuing deputies. As reported by Breitbart Texas, the small Texas communities within Zavala County are being inundated with migrant smuggling activity on area highways and rural roadways.
According to Zavala County Chief Deputy Sheriff Ricardo Rios, migrant smuggling activity is increasing daily. This case was the second case in three days involving larger migrant groups concealed within larger vehicles and trailers.
On Saturday, one of the department’s deputies encountered a commercial panel van whose driver also led authorities on a pursuit. Once stopped, more than 20 occupants believed to be migrants fled from the vehicle. All the occupants in that incident managed to escape from the outnumbered deputies.
In the first ten days of April, Zavala County deputies thwarted twenty-four such events. In those incidents, an untold number of migrants escaped from the deputies. Deputies managed to apprehend at least 50 migrants, the chief deputy stated. The migrants arrested, according to Rios, were subsequently turned over to the Border Patrol. Rios told Breitbart Texas the situation is getting worse by the day instead of getting better.
Texas Department of Public Safety
The encounters often end when migrant smugglers crash vehicles, at times after lengthy, dangerous pursuits on the isolated farms to market roads and state highways traversing the county. The property damage done during the incidents frustrates residents and property owners according to Rios.
The smugglers, he added, come from outside the Zavala County communities and are lured by offers from cartel smuggling organizations promising easy money via social media posts.
Texas Department of Public Safety
Under current Texas law, human smugglers can face stiff penalties. Suspects arrested and charged under a Texas statute for Smuggling of Persons, which currently is at a minimum, a third-degree felony, and can carry fines up to $10,000 and a prison term between two and 10 years.
Randy Clark is a 32-year veteran of the United States Border Patrol. Prior to his retirement, he served as the Division Chief for Law Enforcement Operations, directing operations for nine Border Patrol Stations within the Del Rio, Texas, Sector. Follow him on Twitter @RandyClarkBBTX.
Read the full article here
Discussion about this post