By David Agren in Frontera Corozal

Texas border agents discovered 20 undocumented immigrants, including two children, attempting to enter the US while hiding under the boards of a trailer on Monday.

Texas border agents discovered 20 undocumented immigrants, including two children,
attempting to enter the US while hiding under the boards of a trailer on Monday

The discovery came two days before Vice President Kamala Harris announced she will travel to Mexico and Guatemala as the migrant crisis at the border deepens. 

Chief Patrol Agent Austin Skero shared images of the smuggling attempt that showed 18 adults and two children lying on top of one another under the boards. 

Another image shows massive bags and other items that were placed on top of the boards to conceal the migrants

Skero confirmed that the children’s ages are 10 and 15. It’s unclear if they were traveling alone, with their parents or with other relatives. 

Another image shows massive bags and other items that were placed on top of the boards to conceal the migrants.  

Skero said they made the discovery after a Del Rio Sector K9 alerted agents to the trailer at one of their checkpoints. 

‘With temperatures on the rise, smuggling attempts like these have a high potential to turn deadly,’ Skero said. 

It’s also unclear where exactly they were traveling from. 

CBP data shows migrant crossings at the US-Mexico border is vastly higher in 2021 compared to 2020, which saw a decrease. 

Migrants, in dozens of interviews over the last two weeks, generally said circumstances in Central America led them to the US.

Smuggling fees vary widely, with some paying up to $10,000 a person in the Rio Grande Valley, the busiest corridor for illegal crossings. 

CBP agents register immigrants before bussing them to processing centers near the La Joya, Texas, border .

There is often a discount for additional relatives. The trip can take weeks in cars, buses and trucks, ending when an inflatable raft reaches the banks of the Rio Grande and families and children turn themselves in to Border Patrol agents. 

The latest jump in border crossings follows ferocious storms in Central America and President Joe Biden ending former president Donald Trump’s hardline immigration policies, though many changes attributed to Biden are rumors or have been fabricated by smugglers to generate business. 

The ‘root causes’ prompting Central Americans to leave haven’t changed, said Sister Norma Pimentel, executive director of Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, whose temporary shelter has been hosting 400 to 500 people nightly, compared with a peak of about 1,000 in 2019.

‘I think that it’s simply that the traffickers use whatever is happening in the United States to extort the families, to lure them, to create a narrative that says, ‘Come right now. The president is going to let you in,” she said.

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