Crime

Notorious Illegal Immigration Smuggling Busts in Texas

Most Deadly, Inhumane, Political

Due to current Biden-Harris Border Crisis, between 6,000 and 8,000 people attempt to illegally enter Texas from Mexico each day.

Fortunately, our brave law enforcement officers, including the border and highway patrol officers, are able to prevent most of them. However, some load up in trailers after sneaking in a variety of ways.

The recent arrest of a man and woman near Laredo, Texas garnered international attention of news there were 89 illegal immigrants being transported in a stolen tractor-trailer. (See story at end of article).

Here are the most deadly, inhumane, political and number arrests on Texas highways for human smuggling.

Most Deaths: Victoria, 2003

On May 14, 2003, one of the deadliest smuggling incidents occurred along Highway 87 in Victoria, Texas where 70 people were trapped inside the trailer of an 18-wheeler.

In the end, 19 of those 70 died from dehydration.

Fourteen people were indicted by federal prosecutors, including truck driver Tyrone Williams, who was initially sentenced to life in prison.

In total, Williams was convicted on 58 counts of conspiracy, harboring, and transporting illegal immigrants.

Williams

In 2011, Williams was given a new sentence of nearly 34 years in prison after a federal appeals court overturned the multiple life sentences he received. Williams was the only defendant who faced a possible death sentence.

Most Inhumane: Houston, 2017

In July 2017 a dozen migrants were discovered in Houston in a box truck. Some as young as 16-years-old, undocumented and had paid for illegal transport into Texas from various Latin American countries.

Prosecutors indicated they were in the truck for 12 hours with no food and little water. The Penske rental truck was in the parking lot of a strip center on Harwin in southwest Houston and held 10 men, one woman, and a teen.

Most Politically Disturbing: San Antonio 2017

The actions of San Antonio Chief Bill McManus on December 23, 2017 have been  under investigation by the Texas Attorney General for four years.

The previous July 23, 2017 drew negative national attention to McManus when eight people were found dead and 30 injured inside a semitrailer overnight in a Walmart parking lot on San Antonio’s south side.

While officers and emergency responders were concerned about SUVs and vans took some of the illegal aliens away in an organized escape, McManus nonchalantly blew it off.

U.S. Homeland Security officers were startled when McManus told the media, “It happens all the time.”

A 2017 press release from the San Antonio Police Officers Association explains what occurred at December 2017 debacle:

“On that night, in possible violation of established procedures and State and Federal law pertaining to suspected human smuggling and trafficking cases, the Chief released twelve undocumented immigrants into the City of San Antonio without properly and thoroughly identifying them.”

“For several years now, San Antonio Police Officers have been well trained on how to handle and process human smuggling and trafficking cases. SAPD also works with Homeland Security through the Federal Joint Task Force to specifically target and arrest individuals involved in these crimes. On December 23rd, when twelve people were stopped and detained under suspicion of smuggling and being in the country illegally, the Officers on scene began following the law and established procedures. Then, Chief McManus arrived.”

SAPOA says City Manager is wrong protecting the chief

“When Chief McManus arrived unexpectedly on scene, in civilian clothing and with a lawyer from a non-profit organization, Officers briefed the Chief on the situation and their actions, which included notifying Homeland Security. The Chief immediately changed their orders: they were not to identify the individuals or check their immigration status (as Texas law allows local law enforcement to do) and they were not to involve Homeland Security (as per Joint Task Force procedures).”

“When an agent from Homeland Security did arrive, the Chief informed him that his assistance was not needed. After transporting the individuals to police headquarters, the Chief allowed the non-profit attorney complete access to them before ever allowing even one of the Special Victims Unit (SVU) detectives to speak to them. The Chief then stated that none of the detainees were to be processed through SAPD databases and ordered them released. At this point, SVU Supervisors were so shocked they requested the order be put in writing.”

“The twelve detainees were then escorted out of the back of police headquarters and released into the city. Afterwards, the Chief told the media that the case was based on a “fluid situation,” and that “it’s not necessarily how every case will be handled going forward.” SAPOA believes that the Chief’s actions were political, not in line with established State and Federal laws and procedures, and may have risked the safety of the community.”

Most Humans Smuggled: Near Laredo on IH-35

Marc Anthony Bane, 45, of Porter, and Tara Rene Dillion, 33, of nearby Conroe, just northwest of Houston, were arrested for transporting 89 illegal aliens in a stolen 18-wheeler on July 13, 2021.

According to the charges, Bane and Dillon arrived at the Texas Border Patrol (BP) checkpoint on Interstate Highway 35 approximately 29 miles north of Laredo in a tractor-trailer.

A service K-9 dog alerted officers, who searched the vehicle and trailer and found 89 undocumented non-U.S. citizens in there.

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