TIJUANA, Mexico — Nearly 150 Central American migrants packed into a tractor-trailer and bound for the United States were rescued in the Mexican Gulf state of Veracruz after being abandoned by smugglers, Mexican authorities said Sunday.

The case comes a week after a truck ferrying scores of Mexican and Central American migrants without sufficient water and ventilation was found in Texas. Ten migrants died in that case.

The 147 people rescued in Veracruz – whose ranks included 48 minors, including 14 unaccompanied by adults – had been left without food and water and were found on Saturday in a rural zone of Ozuluama, the Mexican Institute of Migration said in a statement.

Traffickers had directed the migrants to get out of a truck into which they had been packed in overcrowded conditions lacking ventilation, authorities said.

They were told to hide in the underbrush and await the return of the smugglers, who never came back.

Mexican authorities provided medical care to the migrants, some of whom were dehydrated, officials said. None required hospitalization and all were taken to an immigration facility in Veracruz while officials attempted to clarify their status in Mexico.

They included citizens of Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua, authorities said.

Organized criminal gangs, including the ultraviolent Zetas cartel, control the trafficking corridors through Mexico, charging migrants thousands of dollars each for the trip north, officials say.

Smugglers often abandon their human cargoes en route.

Traffickers also seek to recruit some migrants for criminal activity and sometimes kill their charges for refusing to enlist or for being unable to pay smuggling fees, according to law enforcement officials.

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