EXCLUSIVE: US Border Patrol and police officers in tactical gear are seen in dramatic raid of migrant 'stash house' in Texas where Mexican coyotes were harboring six illegal immigrants

 US Border Patrol agents and heavily-armed police officers were seen raiding a migrant 'stash house' near the Mexican border where six undocumented immigrants were being held after being smuggled into the US by human traffickers.

Photos taken show law enforcement officers in tactical gear descending on a one-story home Monday in La Joya, Texas, just two miles from the border, after receiving a tip that migrants were being 'forced inside.'  

Members of the Mexican cartel are known to use properties and 'stash houses' in border towns to temporarily hold migrants they've smuggled into the country. Some immigrants are held for ransom by the coyotes who refuse to let them leave unless their families buy their freedom. 

The house was located near a recreation ground used by US authorities as a collection point for migrants joining the escalating surge across the Rio Grande from Mexico in a bid to claim asylum. 


Two men and one woman, believed to be coyotes - or human traffickers - were arrested in La Joya, Texas during a dramatic raid of a 'stash house' on Monday. Pictured: A suspect sits on the ground with his hands cuffed behind his back

Two men and one woman, believed to be coyotes - or human traffickers - were arrested in La Joya, Texas during a dramatic raid of a 'stash house' on Monday. Pictured: A suspect sits on the ground with his hands cuffed behind his back

Border Patrol agents, Texas State Troopers and local police arrived outside a run down wooden house to find the three suspects outside and immediately arrested them

Border Patrol agents, Texas State Troopers and local police arrived outside a run down wooden house to find the three suspects outside and immediately arrested them 

Law enforcement officers descended on the home, with at least 20 vehicles cramming the roadway, after receiving an anonymous tip that migrants were being 'forced inside' the property

Law enforcement officers descended on the home, with at least 20 vehicles cramming the roadway, after receiving an anonymous tip that migrants were being 'forced inside' the property 

Authorities were ultimately forced to wait three hours for a search warrant that allowed them to raid the home. The migrants emerged after one of the suspects called for them to come out, police said

Authorities were ultimately forced to wait three hours for a search warrant that allowed them to raid the home. The migrants emerged after one of the suspects called for them to come out, police said 

Six illegal immigrants who had been waiting to be taken to their final destination after they were smuggled across the border by coyotes had been staying inside the house

Six illegal immigrants who had been waiting to be taken to their final destination after they were smuggled across the border by coyotes had been staying inside the house 

But the six adults are believed to have been 'runners' who hope to slip into the US unnoticed instead of going through the asylum process. 

Three adults, two men and one woman, believed to be coyotes, were placed in handcuffs outside the home, however, authorities were only able to enter the property and seize the migrants after a three-hour standoff. 

La Joya Police confirmed the six people inside were not being held hostage, but were staying at the property until they could be transported to their final destination.

Acting on the anonymous tip, police officers, Border Patrol agents and Texas State Troopers surrounded the home, with at least 20 vehicles cramming the roadway. 

A Texas Highway Patrol helicopter was seen circling continuously overhead as more law enforcement piled into the area.  

Many officers cautiously took positions behind their SUVs until there was more intelligence about the situation inside. Others crouched at the back of the building with rifles poised.

Finally law enforcement teams approached the wooden building situated on a dusty lot – their wait caused by holding on for a warrant to search it.

Police raid Texas stash house to free migrants near Mexico border
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Police officers dressed in tactical gear were seen descending on the property with their weapons drawn

Police officers dressed in tactical gear were seen descending on the property with their weapons drawn 

Many officers cautiously took positions behind their SUVs until there was more intelligence about the situation inside. Others crouched at the back of the building with rifles poised

Many officers cautiously took positions behind their SUVs until there was more intelligence about the situation inside. Others crouched at the back of the building with rifles poised

The three suspects were sat down by police away from the building and remained in handcuffs during the dramatic raid
A handcuff suspect is seen being handled by law enforcement officers

The three suspects were sat down by police away from the building and remained in handcuffs during the dramatic raid 

Inside, a search team discovered shotguns in the hideout, but no explosives. Drugs are also commonly found in stash houses, however, authorities refused to comment on whether they seized illegal substances because of the ongoing investigation

Inside, a search team discovered shotguns in the hideout, but no explosives. Drugs are also commonly found in stash houses, however, authorities refused to comment on whether they seized illegal substances because of the ongoing investigation

The six migrants were shepherded away from the suspects and allowed to sit in a group without being handcuffed. Conditions inside the stash houses are generally appalling and pose health hazards. Migrants are typically crammed into small spaces

The six migrants were shepherded away from the suspects and allowed to sit in a group without being handcuffed. Conditions inside the stash houses are generally appalling and pose health hazards. Migrants are typically crammed into small spaces

'This was a stash house for human smuggling,' a La Joya police officer told DailyMail.com. 'The six who came out later weren't hostages, but they were there while they waited to be transported elsewhere.

'Typically in those situations, people are held while they move up the chain to other houses in other cities so they can try to disappear.

'The helicopter was there to act as a spotter in case anyone ran from the house or there were other security issues.

'He said police were on the scene after a call from "an anonymous source who said there were people being forced into the house".'

When officers arrived the suspects were outside the building and immediately arrested.

The officer added: 'We then had to wait while we got a search warrant, which took a considerable time.

'When we got it, we went in immediately. And with the help of one of the suspects, he called out the people who were still inside to come out.'

Inside, a search team discovered shotguns in the hideout, but no explosives. Drugs are also commonly found in stash houses, used as staging posts for marijuana as well as people. 

The six migrants are believed to have been 'runners' who hope to slip into the US unnoticed instead of going through the asylum process

The six migrants are believed to have been 'runners' who hope to slip into the US unnoticed instead of going through the asylum process

The migrants were searched were searched and processed by Border Patrol Agents before being taken into their custody

The migrants were searched were searched and processed by Border Patrol Agents before being taken into their custody 

A Texas Highway Patrol helicopter was seen circling continuously overhead as more law enforcement piled into the area

A Texas Highway Patrol helicopter was seen circling continuously overhead as more law enforcement piled into the area

Stash houses are a crucial part of the trafficking of migrants from Central American countries such as Guatemala and Honduras, who pay extra to try to slip through the net

Stash houses are a crucial part of the trafficking of migrants from Central American countries such as Guatemala and Honduras, who pay extra to try to slip through the net 

'Regarding drugs, I can't be too detailed because it is still an ongoing investigation,' the officer said. 'These stash houses are common in our area. It's the second in a short while here, and this is a small location.'

The six migrants were shepherded away from the suspects and allowed to sit in a group without being handcuffed. They were eventually taken away by Border Patrol, while police took the arrested trio into custody. 

Stash houses run by ruthless Mexican cartels are an increasing problem in southern Texas as the smugglers fuel the growing migrant crisis on the US-Mexico frontier.

The houses are a crucial part of the trafficking of migrants from central American countries such as Guatemala and Honduras who pay extra to try to slip through the net.


Border Patrol Chief Agent Brian Hastings said his teams had just smashed five of them in the Rio Grande Valley section, resulting in 69 'illegal aliens' being held.

He also revealed his agents recently seized 1,450lbs of marijuana from five failed smuggling attempts. The hauls included a cache of guns and were worth $1million in total.

Some of the stash houses are small and contain only a few people like the one raided in La Joya. But some are large homes in wealthy neighborhoods. 

RVs and trailer park homes are also used to move illegal migrants and drug smugglers up the chain.

Border Patrol have busted stash houses containing up to 60 people. Most are men, but there are a few women and occasionally agents find children being dragged along in them.

Conditions inside the stash houses are generally appalling and a health hazard. Migrants are crammed into small spaces, often unable to keep themselves clean. They also lack air conditioning in the searing heat of the Rio Grande Valley where temperatures reached 106F last week. 

EXCLUSIVE: US Border Patrol and police officers in tactical gear are seen in dramatic raid of migrant 'stash house' in Texas where Mexican coyotes were harboring six illegal immigrants EXCLUSIVE: US Border Patrol and police officers in tactical gear are seen in dramatic raid of migrant 'stash house' in Texas where Mexican coyotes were harboring six illegal immigrants Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 05:20 Rating: 5

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