Border Patrol Agents care for toddler after proving the child was being used by two smugglers

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DEL RIO, Texas – Border Patrol Agents cared for a toddler over nearly a 24 hour period after the child was recovered from smugglers. The two smugglers told agents they were related to the child but agents found that statement to be false.

“Of all the people that smugglers exploit, children are the most vulnerable,” said Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Raul L. Ortiz. “Thanks to the cooperative efforts between HSI and Border Patrol, this child was removed from a dangerous situation and properly cared for.”

The toddler was cared for at the Uvalde Border Patrol Station. Officials say agents personally cared for the child for nearly 24 hours then, the child was placed in the custody of Health and Human Services.

“HSI’s message is clear – our priority is to protect the children.” said Shane Folden, Special Agent in Charge, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) San Antonio. “HSI will continue to partner with the Border Patrol to identify and dismantle the criminal organizations using fraud to smuggle children.”

Officials say, at this time the child’s family has not been identified and the two smugglers are being held pending charges by HSI.

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