Border Patrol Thwarts Two Sizable Human Smuggling Attempts

Release Date: July 20, 2020

LAREDO, TEXAS – On the same day, U.S. Border Patrol agents at the Interstate Highway 35 (I-35) checkpoint stopped two sizable human smuggling attempts north of Laredo.

The first incident occurred during the early morning of July 19, when a white pickup truck hauling a white travel trailer approached the I-35 checkpoint. During an immigration inspection of the driver and passenger, a Service canine alerted. At secondary, agents discovered 30 Mexican and Guatemalan nationals, including one juvenile, hiding in the trailer.

They were determined to be in the country illegally. The individuals, along with the driver and passenger, both U.S. citizens, were taken into custody pending further investigation. U.S. Border Patrol also seized two small amounts of narcotics found in the pickup truck. The truck and trailer were both found to be rental vehicles and were remitted to the rental companies.

The second incident occurred later that afternoon, when a tractor-trailer with a driver and passenger approached the I-35 checkpoint. A Service canine alerted to the trailer. Agents discovered 12 individuals who were illegally present in the United States from the country of Mexico.

The individuals, along with the U.S. citizen driver and passenger, were taken into custody pending further investigation by Homeland Security Investigations Special Agents.

The tractor and trailer were seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.

Despite the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, smugglers continue to endanger the lives of individuals they exploit and the health and safety of our Nation. U.S. Border Patrol agents strive to prevent the flow of illegal immigration and slow the spread of COVID-19.

To report suspicious activity such as alien and/or drug smuggling, download the “USBP Laredo Sector” App or contact the Laredo Sector Border Patrol toll free at 1-800-343-1994.


U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.