Truck driver caught smuggling 149 people inside 18-wheeler

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An American truck driver has been arrested and charged after 149 people were discovered in the back of an 18-wheeler truck he was driving, according to a statement released on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency's website.

The truck, heading towards San Antonio, was picked up on April 16 at a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate 35, north of Laredo, Texas.

After the driver allowed border patrol agents to scan the vehicle, revealing some "anomalies," further inspection revealed the 149 immigrants inside the sealed cargo area of the vehicle. None were wearing PPE.

The U.S. Border Protection Agency said the immigrants had arrived in the U.S. illegally from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Venezuela, El Salvador, Peru and Ecuador.

The driver admitted to sitting inside the cab of the truck and watching people being loaded into the trailer he was hauling, according to court documents seen by the Laredo Morning Times.

Having admitted to two driving approximately two trailers full of people prior to this one, and being paid between $25,000 and $30,000 for each, the driver said he was due to be paid for this journey when he arrived in San Antonio.


RUNDOWN SHOWS:
1. U.S.-Mexico border located on world map
2. A truck driving towards San Antonio
3. U.S. Border Patrol officer scanning a truck with immigrants inside
4. World map with immigrants' starting points located
5. 149 people being loaded into truck
6. Map view of truck heading along Interstate 35

VOICEOVER (in English):
"An American truck driver has been arrested and charged after 149 people were discovered in the back of an 18-wheeler truck he was driving, according to a statement released on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency's website."

"The truck, heading towards San Antonio, was picked up on April 16 at a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate 35, north of Laredo, Texas."

"After the driver allowed border patrol agents to scan the vehicle, revealing some 'anomalies,' further inspection revealed the 149 immigrants inside the sealed cargo area of the vehicle. None were wearing PPE."

"The U.S. Border Protection Agency said the immigrants had arrived in the U.S. illegally from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Venezuela, El Salvador, Peru and Ecuador."

"The driver admitted to sitting inside the cab of the truck and watching people being loaded into the trailer he was hauling, according to court documents seen by the Laredo Morning Times."

"Having admitted to two driving approximately two trailers full of people prior to this one, and being paid between $25,000 and $30,000 for each, the driver said he was due to be paid for this journey when he arrived in San Antonio."

SOURCES: Laredo Morning Times, CBS DFW, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency
https://www.lmtonline.com/news/article/149-immigrants-found-in-18-wheeler-16112456.php#photo-20887636
https://dfw.cbslocal.com/2021/04/20/border-patrol-officers-find-149-illegal-aliens/
https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/local-media-release/laredo-sector-border-patrol-discover-149-undocumented-individuals