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84 migrants found in dump truck in Texas human smuggling attempt, officials say

The driver faces dozens of counts of human smuggling after the truck was stopped in southern Texas on Tuesday, the Texas Department of Public Safety said.

Texas state police say 84 migrants were found in a dump truck Tuesday in what authorities are calling a human smuggling attempt.

No injuries were reported in the incident on Interstate Highway 35 in Cotulla.

The 84 people, from Mexico and Guatemala, were in the cargo area of the dump truck, a spokesman for the Department of Public Safety, known as the DPS, said on social media.

The driver, of Poteet, south of San Antonio, faces 84 counts of human smuggling, according to the DPS.

The truck was stopped for an inspection around 8 a.m. During the stop people got out of the dump truck and ran into the brush, the DPS said. Eighty-four were found, it said.

It was not clear whether the alleged driver has been formally charged.

The DPS did not immediately respond to a request Wednesday evening for more details about the person who was arrested. The DPS statements did not say where the truck was coming from or where it was headed.

84 migrants were found in a dump truck in what authorities are calling a human smuggling attempt in Cotulla, Texas.
Migrants exit the back of a dump truck Tuesday in Cotulla, Texas.Texas Department of Public Safety

Cotulla is around 70 miles northwest of the U.S.-Mexico border. The driver is alleged to have used a private ranch road to get around a checkpoint in Webb County, which is closer to the border.

The truck appeared to be open at the top, allowing for airflow, but some other human smuggling attempts have been deadly.

In San Antonio in June, 53 people were found dead or died later after the tractor-trailer they had been in was found abandoned.

One of two men charged federally with human smuggling in that case was alleged to have told a confidential informant that an air conditioning unit in the truck had stopped working, according to an affidavit filed with the criminal complaint.