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Eric Gay / AP

"How smugglers use trucks with sometimes deadly results," by AP's Michael Tarm:

  • "Border officials have reported an uptick in the number of people-smuggling incidents using tractor-trailers. That included one on July 7, when Border Patrol agents in Laredo, Texas, found 72 people from Mexico, Ecuador, Guatemala and El Salvador locked inside a trailer."
  • "A recent report from European-based global -risk group Verisk Maplecroft suggests that a harder line on border security by the Trump administration might be leading migrants to accept the risks of more dangerous smuggling methods."
  • "[I]mmigrants ... typically [don't want] to remain in [the] border area. Most hope to make it to large U.S. cities ... where they may have jobs or family waiting."
  • Why it happens: "Smugglers know there are hundreds and thousands of immigrants desperate to get away from the border as fast as possible. ... The more people they can move at one time, the more the profit."

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
1 hour ago - Technology

Scoop: Google is investigating the actions of another top AI ethicist

Google CEO Sundar Pichai. Photo by Mateusz Wlodarczyk/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Google is investigating recent actions by Margaret Mitchell, who helps lead the company's ethical AI team, Axios has confirmed.

Why it matters: The probe follows the forced exit of Timnit Gebru, a prominent researcher also on the AI ethics team at Google whose ouster ignited a firestorm among Google employees.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Joe Biden's COVID-19 bubble

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The incoming administration is planning extraordinary steps to protect its most prized commodity, Joe Biden, including requiring daily employee COVID tests and N95 masks at all times, according to new guidance sent to some incoming employees Tuesday.

Why it matters: The president-elect is 78 years old and therefore a high risk for the virus and its worst effects, despite having received the vaccine. While President Trump's team was nonchalant about COVID protocols — leading to several super-spreader episodes — the new rules will apply to all White House aides in "high proximity to principals."

Justice Department drops insider trading inquiry against Sen. Richard Burr

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) walking through the Senate Subway in the U.S. Capitol in December 2020. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

The Department of Justice told Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) on Tuesday that it will not move forward with insider trading charges against him.

Why it matters: The decision, first reported by the New York Times, effectively ends the DOJ's investigation into the senator's stock sell-off that occurred after multiple lawmakers were briefed about the coronavirus' potential economic toll. Burr subsequently stepped down as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.