Border Patrol agents removed a total of 7 undocumented immigrants, including 3 children, from hot car trunks on Wednesday night at the I-19 checkpoint.
In two separate incidents agents thwarted smuggling attempts.
At 5:45 p.m., agents stopped a white four-door sedan for a secondary inspection. Agents discovered three people in the trunk during the vehicle search.
The subjects all identified as Mexican nationals, including a 16-year-old juvenile, and were taken into custody.
The driver, a United States citizen, was arrested and is pending criminal charges.
Agents stopped a white Pontiac sedan for a secondary inspection less than an hour later.
A search of the car revealed four undocumented aliens from Guatemala, including two under the age of 14, hiding in the trunk.
The subjects were taken into custody and the driver of the vehicle was arrested.
Both vehicles did not have emergency releases inside their trunks and lacked ventilation according to a Customs and Border Protection release.
The inside temperature of closed trunks can get in excess of 125 degrees with temperatures reaching triple digits during Arizona’s summer months.
“This is another example of the callous disregard for life indicative of criminal organizations,” Chief Patrol Agent Paul Beeson said. “If not for the actions of these Border Patrol agents, seven people including three children could have easily lost their lives at the hands of unscrupulous smugglers.”