A Mexican National on a visitor visa has entered a guilty plea to attempting to smuggle illegal aliens behind a load of produce.
According to U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick, a federal grand jury returned the indictment against 39-year-old Luis Valero-Carrizalesin February.
Today, he pleaded guilty as charged.
Valero-Carrizales admitted he conspired to transport illegal aliens hidden behind a load of produce in the trailer of the 18-wheeler he was driving.
On Dec. 16, 2017, Valero-Carrizales drove a freightliner and approached the primary inspection lane at the U.S. Border Patrol Checkpoint near Falfurrias. During a routine immigration inspection, a service canine alerted to the trailer.
During a search of the vehicle, authorities discovered 53 illegal aliens hidden inside.
The temperature inside the refrigerated trailer was 54 degrees.
Valero-Carrizales was taken into custody, where he remains pending his sentencing hearing, set for August. he faces a maximum of 10 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 fine.