EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – Mexican authorities are reporting the seizure of more than 3,000 migrants during a 48-hour period beginning last Friday in the states of Chiapas, Tabasco, Oaxaca, Veracruz and Nuevo Leon.

The largest apprehensions — or “rescues,” as the government calls them — took place in Veracruz, where agents with the National Migration Institute (INM) stopped a semi-trailer truck near the town of Alvarado carrying 334 foreign nationals in the cargo area, and another 54 in a charter bus near Acayucan, INM said.

A large number of migrants was riding the box of a semi stopped at a highway checkpoint in Veracruz, Mexico. (Courtesy Government of Mexico)

Meantime, the Mexican National Guard stopped a caravan of 319 Haitians, Central and South Americans who set off from Tapachula early Friday. The migrants, which included families with small children, were handed over to INM, Mexican media reported.

Another 57 crammed into the overhead sleeping compartment of a semi were taken into custody at a checkpoint on the Matehuala-Monterrey Highway; 21 more were seized at checkpoints in Tabasco.

All of the drivers were turned over to the Mexican Attorney General’s Office for prosecution. Single adults were sent to detention centers while families with children were referred to DIF, Mexico’s Family Protective Service.

The stepped-up highway enforcement comes after both Mexico and the United States saw record numbers of third-country migrants cross their borders without authorization in 2021.

“These highway operations, performed with the support and cooperation of (local) governments in Mexico are meant to sustain an orderly, secure and (lawful) migration, with strict adherence to the human rights of people on the move through our national territory,” the INM said in a news release.