USBP agents find 74 migrants in a semi-trailer

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A truck driver who claimed he was carrying “several pallets of paint containers” was arrested after federal agents discovered 74 migrants in his cargo, according to an affidavit of arrest.

Nickolas Carvajal has been charged with transportation, attempted transportation and conspiracy to transport migrants.

At approximately 10:50 p.m. on March 19, Carvajal arrived at the U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate 35 driving a blue tractor towing a white trailer. During an immigration inspection, a K-9 unit alerted to possible contraband in the vehicle.

Carvajal presented a bill of lading listing the contents of the shipment as auto parts. But during a secondary inspection, officers removed the security seals and discovered 74 migrants inside the trailer, according to court documents.

Special Agents from Homeland Security Investigations took over the case. Carvajal told special agents that a man offered him a job hauling a load from Laredo to San Antonio. Carvajal added that he picked up the trailer from a construction site north of Laredo.


“Carvajal said the trailer contained several pallets of paint containers and nothing else,” the affidavit states.

Carvajal said he did not know the exact amount of payment for the work, but expected to be paid between $200 and $2,000.

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