Duo’s False Wall Human Smuggling Attempt Foiled

Release Date: October 6, 2020

LAREDO, TEXAS – A duo of human smugglers attempt to utilize a false wall during a smuggling scheme involving a utility van at the Interstate Highway 35 (I-35) checkpoint north of Laredo.

The incident occurred during the morning of October 2, when the vehicle with two visible occupants approached the checkpoint. During an immigration inspection of the driver and passenger, a Service canine alerted to the cargo area of the vehicle. Agents referred the vehicle to secondary inspection where they discovered 18 individuals concealed behind a false wall in the cargo area. They were not wearing any Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and were medically evaluated for their safety.

All of the individuals were determined to be illegally present in the United States from the countries of Mexico and Honduras.

The individuals along with the driver and passenger, both U.S. citizens, were taken into custody pending investigation. U.S. Border Patrol seized the vehicle.

With a noted increase in COVID-19 infections among detainees, the smuggling and housing of large groups of individuals in close quarters without PPE not only endangers the people being smuggled, but the safety of our Nation. Agents of the Laredo Sector are dedicated to the U.S. Border Patrol’s mission to protect the American people, safeguard our borders, and enhance the Nation’s economic prosperity.

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. If you see something, please say something. You can also follow us on our social media platforms on Twitter and Instagram @usbpchieflrt and @usbpdepchieflrt and on Facebook at US Border Patrol Laredo Sector.