Trucker arrested when 42 migrants found in semi-trailer
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Trucker arrested when 42 migrants found in semi-trailer

A semi-truck driver was arrested Monday by Arizona Department of Public Safety officers after they found 42 undocumented immigrants in the trailer he was hauling, authorities said. 

The arrest came at the end of a joint investigation involving agents with CBP, Homeland Security Investigations, and Arizona DPS. 

Agents with HSI learned from "an investigative source" that undocumented immigrants were hiding in brush north of Nogales, said Jose Maheda, a spokesman with U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Joint Task Force West. 

HSI agents forwarded this information to Homeland Security's Joint Intelligence Operations Center, which coordinated support from U.S. Border Patrol, Air and Marine Operations, and Arizona DPS. 

"From high above the scene, an aircrew from AMO reported seeing a group of people leaving the brush and climbing into the back of a tractor-trailer," said Maheda. 

Officers arrested the driver, a U.S. citizen, around 9 p.m. on the northbound lane of Interstate 19 near Tubac. He and the undocumented immigrants were transferred to Border Patrol custody in Nogales.

Federal officials did not identity the arrested man.

"This collaborative law enforcement action was made possible because multiple agencies work together through the Joint Task Force-West Arizona," said Paul Beeson, the head of task force in Arizona, and chief of Tucson Sector Border Patrol. "These types of coordinated efforts leverage partner agency capabilities and jurisdictional authorities to dismantle criminal networks."

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A group of 42 undocumented immigrants found in a trailer as part of a joint investigation involving federal and Arizona law enforcement.