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Tuesday, February 3, 1998 Published at 23:21 GMT

World: Americas

Mexican immigrants found inside truck in USA

United States border patrol officers say they've intercepted a truck carrying more than a 120 illegal immigrants from Mexico -- many of whom were in a poor physical condition.

The discovery was made in the US state of New Mexico, when the vehicle was ordered to stop on a main road.

Those inside said they'd paid up to a thousand dollars each to be taken to various cities in the United States.

The authorities have arrested the Mexican driver -- who, they say, has previous convictions for involvement in similar schemes.

Thousands of Mexicans cross illegally into the United States every year.

But figures show that about two-hundred-and-fifty die in the attempt, many drowning in the Rio Grande river which marks much of the border.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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