Throughout history, as law enforcement has made developments, criminals have as well. For example, when fingerprinting became standard procedure at the time of arrest, burglars began to wear gloves.
And for those trying to illegally smuggle people across international borders, that learning curve has been no different. And if it werent for the vigilance of a few good border patrol agents, that learning curve might have brought greater success.
Last Thursday, agents saw what appeared to be an official Border Patrol vehicle…and waved.
But then they noticed some things that didnt look quite right:
Agent Keith Zamora explained that they had noticed subtle differences between that vehicle and a standard Border Patrol SUV:
A standard vehicle, he said, would have the following:
- a higher front bumper for off-road capabilities
- no side running board for the same reason
- lights on top of the vehicle
They also noticed that the strange vehicle seemed to have had the rear seats removed.
So they pursued and stopped the vehicle.
And as soon as the opened the doors, they could see the problem:
Twelve illegal aliens had been wedged into the vehicle where the seats should have been.
Laredo Sector Border Patrol Chief Mario Martinez released a statement concerning the incident:
As we continue to monitor security along the border and in adjacent communities, smugglers have resorted to desperate measures to conduct their illicit business.
The training, attention to detail and vigilance of our Border Patrol agents halted this human smuggling attempt.
This isnt the first time that fake vehicles have been used to smuggle people or drugs across the U.S./Mexican border, but it is the first time that a cloned Border Patrol vehicle has been documented. The driver was detained, and the investigation is ongoing.