A woman left to die was found by U.S. Border Patrol agents near the small community of Havana, Texas which is just miles from the Mexican border. The agents who are part of the Rio Grande Valley Sector discovered the woman while patrolling in the area. Apparently the woman was being smuggled into the United States but her smugglers had left her to die.
Agents found the woman unconscious suffering from both dehydration and heat exhaustion. An agent with emergency medical training administered first aid while waiting for an ambulance to arrive and take the woman to a hospital in the nearby town of McAllen. The woman was in stable condition and expected to make a full recovery. The McAllen border patrol station will process the woman after her release from the hospital.
Later the same day, a vehicle chase ensued when the Border Patrol were alerted to a suspicious vehicle on Highway 77, near the Sarita Checkpoint. Agents were able to stop the driver who was taken into custody. The car was inspected and when agents opened the trunk they found seven illegal immigrants trapped inside. Temperatures that day were near 100 degrees.
Human smugglers, also known as coyotes, prey on those fleeing poverty and poor living conditions. Fees for those who want to be smuggled into the United States average $3,000 to $4,000 when crossing by foot or up to $9,000 by boat. Coyotes collect their fees upfront and care little for the well-being of the humans they are smuggling. Counties all along south Texas have found rotting bodies and skeletons of immigrants left to die by their smugglers. Many of the immigrants are coming to escape the violence in Central America via the Mexican border.
The Rio Grande Valley Sector has seen its share of these smuggling operations where apprehensions have increased by 81 percent in 2016.