Four Guys Were Detained 53 Migrant Deaths In Texas From Smuggling

Four Guys Were Detained 53 Migrant Deaths In Texas From Smuggling

The Department of Justice announced Tuesday that four Mexican nationals have been detained in Texas for their roles in the 2022 tractor-trailer smuggling incident that resulted in the deaths of 53 migrants, including eight children and one pregnant woman. It is thought to be the bloodiest instance of human smuggling in recent U.S. history.

Attorney General Merrick B. Garland stated that “human smugglers prey on migrants’ hope for a better life, but their only priority is profit.”

Sadly, 53 persons who had been cruelly treated for hours while being put into a tractor-trailer in Texas died as a result of this heartless plan. Human traffickers who violate the law and endanger lives for financial gain.

Riley Covarrubias-Ponce, 30, Felipe Orduna-Torres, 28, Luis Alberto Rivera-Leal, 37, and Armando Gonzales-Ortega, 53, were named in the DOJ statement as the men who were allegedly involved in a smuggling network that smuggled illegal immigrants from Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico into the United States.

Migrant Deaths In Mexico

Three teenagers, all cousins, who were among the 53 migrants that perished inside a semi-trailer near San Antonio, Texas, have their coffins covered with soccer jerseys.

In prepared remarks, Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. stated that the victims of this people smuggling enterprise “died under horrific circumstances, underscoring the callous disregard smuggling organisations, such as this one, show for human life.”

Some of the defendants, according to the government, knew “the trailer’s air-conditioning unit was malfunctioning” and would not supply cold air to those within the tractor-trailer.

According to the allegations, the smugglers’ illicit behaviour and knowledge caused the car to reach unsafe temperatures, Polite Jr. “And as those temperatures rose, those people banged, scratched, clawed, and yelled out for their humanity.”

Following the indictments of two men for their involvement in the operation last year, the arrests on Tuesday took place. Homero Zamorano Jr., 46, and Christian Martinez, 28, both of Pasadena, Texas, were indicted by a federal grand jury in San Antonio in July 2022 on counts of transporting and conspiring to transport migrants illegally resulting in death, as well as transporting and conspiring to transport migrants illegally resulting in injury.

Source: CNN

Six Guys To Sentenced With Death Penalties

According to the office, the maximum sentence for each defendant upon conviction is life in prison. They face the same allegations as the two Texans who were indicted in July: Christian Martinez, 29, of Palestine, Texas, and Homero Zamorano Jr., 47, of Pasadena, Texas, who was named as the driver.

The accusations against Mr. Zamorano and Mr. Martinez carried a maximum sentence of life in prison or the capital penalty, according to the U.S. attorney’s office at the time. Mr. Garland would decide whether to seek the death penalty later on.

Federal authorities are holding the six guys. The other accused are still awaiting trial, according to court records, while Mr. Zamorano’s trial has already started.

48 of the migrants were already dead when organisation members arrived at the vehicle after its roughly three-hour trek to San Antonio. Sixteen people with heat-related injuries were sent to hospitals, where five more eventually passed away.

According to the DOJ, the four individuals were each charged with conspiracies involving the transport of illegal aliens that resulted in death, serious bodily damage, and endangering lives. If convicted on the most serious counts, the maximum sentence is life in prison.

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