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Border Patrol agents discovered 26 undocumented immigrants hiding inside a tractor-trailer as the driver underwent an immigration check near the U.S.-Mexico border on Wednesday night.
A canine alerted the officers to inspect the vehicle after crossing into California at the El Centro Sector checkpoint on Highway 86.
Teenagers were among the group. Border Patrol Agent Carlos Pitones told the Los Angeles Times that the immigrants’ ages ranged from 16 to 56.
US Customs and Border Protection also reveals in a news release that the 32-year-old driver is actually a Mexican national who presented a fraudulent California license.
"This smuggling operation had no regard for the safety of the people they were smuggling," said Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez, who noted none of those locked inside the trailer were wearing safety restraints.
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