AUSTIN, TX (KXAN) - After hours of staking out and waiting, Austin police busted what they believe is an international human smuggling ring.
Authorities conducted the raid on a mobile home on Freidrich Lane in Southeast Austin around 1 p.m. Tuesday.
Inside the home they found 28 people, but police were still unclear who was operating the ring, and which people were victims. Police said the group was made up of adult men and women smuggled in from Central America.
The Human Trafficking and Vice Unit with the Austin Police Department took the lead on the investigation after receiving a tip from an informant that people inside the single-family home were being mistreated and harmed, according to police.
Authorities spent the morning securing search warrants and monitoring the neighborhood. Once detained, the group was taken in to be interviewed by Austin police detectives.
There were two schools near the trailer park. Police said Uphaus Early Childhood, which is on Freidrich Lane, and Josephine Houston Elementary School, about a half-mile away from the home, received notifications of their operation.
APD said it stationed an officer at the schools just in case, but the schools would make the calls to take any further precautions. Police said they believe they are far enough from the schools that the operation should not impact them in any way.