Tuesday night at approximately 11 p.m. on I-59, a DeKalb County patrol sergeant and K-9 deputy conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle from Texas.
DeKalb County Sheriff Nick Welden said there were nine occupants inside the vehicle. After a further investigation, Welden said it was determined that the occupants were in the United States illegally and it was a human smuggling operation to transport them into the country from the Southern Border.
Welden said Department of Homeland Security Investigators were called, and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement detainers were placed on the subjects. Federal charges are pending.
Welden said the case is still ongoing and is currently under investigation.
“This is a great arrest on I-59,” Welden said. “Due to the highways and interstates intersecting our county, it’s highly likely that human trafficking, as well as illegal narcotics, regularly move through.
“We have an opportunity to do our part as a department and help curb this illegal activity. Proactive law enforcement can not only build a better county, but also help clean up our country. I’d like to commend these deputies on their dedication to this. God bless.