19 people found inside of southwest Houston apartment in possible human smuggling operation, police confirm

HPD says the people may be a part of a human smuggling operation
HPD says the people may be a part of a human smuggling operation

HOUSTON – Houston police are investigating after 19 people were found inside a one-bedroom apartment in southwest Houston Wednesday afternoon.

HPD responded to reports of a possible human smuggling operation at an apartment complex located in the 6400 block of South Gessner around 12:00 p.m.

When officers arrived, they found 19 men and women, including an unaccompanied minor between the ages of 13 and 16 years old, living inside the one-bedroom apartment.

Officers said the apartment was unfurnished and the people inside were living in “deplorable conditions.”

“Nobody appeared to need immediate medical attention and nobody was immediately claiming injury, but as we know from dealing with these situations, folks in that position don’t always immediately make an outcry. So we’ve also brought our victim services division to the scene to see what they may be able to do to help these people,” said HPD Asst. Chief Michael Skillern.

According to HPD, the apartment had only been rented for two weeks before it was reported.

No arrests have been made, police said.

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) is working with the Houston Police Department to investigate the possible human smuggling operation.

WATCH: HPD’s full news conference on the 19 people found living in ‘deplorable conditions’ at an apartment complex in SW Houston

Houston police said this may be part of a human smuggling operation
Houston police said this may be part of a human smuggling operation

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