CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) — A Mexican trucker must serve 2½ years in a U.S. prison for trying to smuggle 53 immigrants in a refrigerated trailer through a South Texas border checkpoint.

Luis Valero-Carrizales was sentenced Thursday in Corpus Christi. The 39-year-old Valero-Carrizales in April pleaded guilty to conspiracy to transport undocumented immigrants.

Prosecutors say Valero-Carrizales was in the U.S. on a visitor visa when he was arrested in December as the immigrants were found in the truck trailer at the Falfurrias (fal-FYOO’-ree-uhs) checkpoint. The temperature inside was 54 degrees (12.22 Celsius).

The immigrants were detained. Authorities didn’t report anyone injured.

Valero-Carrizales is expected to be deported after his release from federal prison.