Three weeks after nearly 40 illegal immigrants were found packed into a sweltering tractor trailer in San Antonio, it's happened, again, but News Radio 1200 WOAI reports this time it wasn't heat, it was cold.
The Border Patrol says a tractor trailer stopped for routine inspection at its checkpoint in Falfurrias, south of Corpus Christi, discovered 60 illegal immigrants stuffed between pallets of broccoli. The veggies and the immigrants all were covered by a 'thin layer of ice,' according to a Border Patrol statement.
The immigrants were from Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras. None required medical attention, but all were taken into custody and will be processed for deportation.
The truck driver, a Guatemalan national, was arrested.
Ten immigrants died in San Antonio in July when they were found in a south side parking lot in an unheated trailer. The truck driver in that case is facing charges that could carry the death penalty. He will be arraigned in federal court later this week.
Analysts say the hardening of the border has led to the Mexican cartels that mainly deal in drug smuggling to take extraordinary and very dangerous measures to get their human cargo into the U.S. There have been several other cases this year of illegal immigrants being left to die in the baking South Texas Brush Country, or crammed into tractor trailers.
"They don't see them as people," one analyst told News Radio 1200 WOAI of the smuggling cartels. "They see them as a commodity."
The relatives of the relatives back home will now be forced by the cartels to cough up the $3,000 to $7,000 they charge to get a person into the U.S.
The Zetas don't give refunds.