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Man charged for fatal immigrant chase in Falfurrias

Federal prosecutors in South Texas have charged a man who they say was smuggling undocumented immigrants when the vehicle he was driving struck a tree, killing five of them.

An affidavit says Manuel Rendon-Lucas told federal agents he was paid $250 for each person he was attempting to drive Saturday from a McAllen home to Houston.

The SUV driven by Rendon was packed with 14 others when Falfurrias police began pursuing it. Rendon was fleeing at a high speed when the vehicle left the road and struck the tree.

Ten others, including Rendon, were injured.

Rendon faces a federal charge of smuggling illegal aliens. The affidavit indicates Rendon himself was in the country illegally.

One survivor told investigators he was going to pay $3,000 to be smuggled into the U.S.

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