At least two immigrants died inside a train carriage near Nepa, Texas, in an incident that is being investigated as human smuggling, local authorities and a senior US official said Friday.
More than a dozen people were found inside train cars on Friday afternoon after someone alerted 911 that migrants were “suffocating” there, according to the police department in the nearby city of Uvalde. US Border Patrol agents responded to the scene, along with local and Texas law enforcement.
The Uvalde Police Department in Uvalde state said five migrants were airlifted to hospitals in the San Antonio area, while five others were taken to local hospitals. a permit. Uvald police added that their conditions remained “unknown” as of Friday evening.
Union Pacific told CBS News in a statement that the train was heading from Eagle Pass to San Antonio. Union Pacific said it was alerted by Border Patrol at about 4 p.m. local time to finding 15 people in two different rail cars.
A senior US official said all indications were that the victims were immigrants smuggled into the country illegally. Migrants are often transported in train cars, tractor trailers and other vehicles by people smugglers after crossing the US-Mexico border without permission.
Migrant smuggling is often dangerous and, in some cases, deadly. In June 2022, 53 migrants, including unaccompanied teenagers, They lost their lives Inside a sweltering tractor trailer abandoned outside San Antonio – the deadliest case of migrant smuggling in US history.
In a statement released on Friday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorcas said he was “saddened to learn of yet another tragic incident involving migrants who made a dangerous journey.” He said that FBI agents are investigating the case.
“We will work with the Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office to hold those responsible to account,” Mayorkas added. “The smugglers are ruthless and only care about making a profit.”