South Texas stash house operator sentenced to 5 years in federal prison


A Mexican man was sentenced in federal court Wednesday to more than five years in prison following his conviction for conspiracy to transport illegal aliens which resulted in ten deaths.

Pedro Silva-Segura, 47, from Mexico but residing illegally in Laredo, Texas, was sentenced Oct. 10 by U.S. District Judge David A. Ezra to 108 months in prison. Since Silva-Segura is not a U.S. citizen he is expected to face deportation proceedings after he completes his prison sentence.

“As this sentence makes clear, those who exploit people in this brutal and disgraceful way will face serious consequences themselves,” said Special Agent in Charge, Shane Folden, HSI San Antonio. “Alien smugglers view their clients as nothing more than a commodity and they have no qualms about collecting their smuggling fees.”

“Today’s lengthy sentence is a reminder that the penalties are very severe for anyone who participates in the dangerous business of illegally transporting human beings in tractor trailers. Time and again, we have seen this practice result in the loss of life of the most vulnerable among us. We will be relentless in prosecuting this very serious crime,” stated U.S. Attorney Bash.

According to court documents, on March 8, 2018, Silva pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to transport illegal aliens, resulting in death. By pleading guilty, Silva admitted to operating a stash house in Laredo, Texas, used as a holding area for illegal aliens awaiting transportation to final destinations in the U.S.

Silva further admitted that approximately five illegal aliens left the stash house on the night of July 22, 2017, and were delivered to a truck driven by James Matthew Bradley, Jr., that was bound for San Antonio.

San Antonio Police Department (SAPD) officers responded to a call at the Wal-Mart store located at 8538 Interstate 35 in San Antonio shortly after midnight on Sunday, July 23, 2017. An officer encountered a tractor-trailer behind the store, finding several people standing and lying in the rear of the trailer, and the driver, Bradley, in the cab. At the scene, law enforcement officers discovered 39 illegal aliens.

Of the 39 found at the scene, 10 died. There were four juveniles, aged 14-17 years old, within the group of aliens in Bradley’s trailer who were unaccompanied by an adult.

Court records further state that the illegal aliens estimated the trailer contained between 70 and 180 to 200 people during transport. They also described differing fees for being transported.

Silva-Segura will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

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