U.S. Border Patrol Agents Ramp Up Efforts in Valley

PEÑITAS, Texas — On a recent afternoon in this Rio Grande Valley town, Juan Longoria stood in his driveway, talking on his cellphone while enjoying a longneck. The only thing that blocked his view of the clear Texas sky was a tethered blimp floating thousands of feet in the air.

The blimp — which contains video and radar equipment for detecting human smugglers, illegal crossers and drug and human traffickers — was formerly used by the U.S. Department of Defense and is now controlled by the U.S. Border Patrol. It can be seen miles away by drivers on State Highway ...

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