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Small plane crashes in Texas; pilot attempted to smuggle migrants, police say

WFTV Channel 9 Orlando
WFTV Channel 9 Orlando
 2021-12-31
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PRESIDIO, Texas — Several people were injured Thursday when a small plane allegedly used to smuggle migrants into the U.S. crashed in southwest Texas, authorities said.

According to the Presidio County Sheriff’s Office, the plane crashed north of the Presidio International Airport, located near the U.S.-Mexico border, KVIA-TV reported.

Investigators said the excess weight of the smuggled passengers -- six people in a four-seat aircraft -- was the likely cause of the crash, the television station reported. The plane was also low on fuel, KFOX-TV reported.

“Deputies arrived on (the) scene and assisted the injured passengers where they discovered that the crash was a smuggling attempt gone wrong,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release. “The pilot attempted to smuggle several undocumented individuals from Presidio by air.”

Deputies said the pilot left the scene and was being sought by authorities, KVIA reported.

Some of the injured passengers were taken to hospitals in El Paso for treatment, according to the television station.

The investigation is ongoing, the sheriff’s office said.

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