BORDER ISSUES

Border agents discover migrants in cattle, horse trailers in separate events within a week

Nine migrants were discovered early Saturday beneath a false floor in a cattle trailer pulled by a semitruck near Nogales.

Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents discovered the migrants, who were hidden in an enclosed space, during a traffic stop at around 1 a.m., according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Agents arrested the semitruck driver and passenger as well as the driver and passenger of a pickup truck that was believed to be traveling alongside the semi on State Route 82 northeast of Nogales.

The driver of the semi, a local U.S. citizen, faces smuggling charges, CBP said. 

Nearly a week prior to that incident, agents discovered 33 migrants “enclosed shoulder to shoulder” inside a horse trailer that was being pulled by a pickup truck during a traffic stop along the same stretch of State Route 82.

Border Patrol agents, alongside Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office deputies, seized $16,000 and arrested two drivers in possession of firearms during the stop in the early hours of Sept. 25, CBP said. 

Officials arrested the driver of the truck hauling the trailer as well as the driver of another pickup that was believed to be traveling with the trailer, officials said. The drivers, both local U.S. citizens, face smuggling charges. 

Have a news tip or story idea about the border and its communities? Contact the reporter at jcastaneda1@arizonarepublic.com or connect with him on Twitter @joseicastaneda