Police: Immigrant Smuggling Ring Busted – AP

This type of story, to some, may only represent a “win” for law enforcement and the battle against “illegal” immigration, but to me it’s a story illustrating the terror of being “escorted” from Mexico to the United States. For those that constantly dress migrants as terrible people just put yourselves in their shoes for a moment. Why would they go through the things mentioned in this article to come to the United States? Who do you think is in control when these migrants are being brought over by smugglers?

I recently watched the movie “Trade” with Kevin Kline where girls are conned into traveling into the U.S. through Mexico and other girls are simply stolen off the streets of Mexico. The objective of these human traffickers is to sell the girls as sex slaves to the highest bidder.  There is another movie from a few years ago called “Human Trafficking” on this subject as well. These stories, based on reality, are a very disturbing view into the world of human trafficking. Though these movies are more focused on forced trafficking I can’t imagine that anyone seeking assistance into this country does so lightly. I’ve never been hidden in a vehicle fearing for my life and I can’t imagine what that must feel like so I’m certainly not going to condone others taking out their frustrations on these migrants.

Police: Immigrant Smuggling Ring Busted
By JACQUES BILLEAUD
February 15, 2008

PHOENIX (AP) — Forty-eight people accused of taking part in an immigrant trafficking ring have been indicted on human smuggling and money laundering charges, authorities said.

The group brought in as much as $130,000 a week moving people from Naco, Mexico, to its center of operations in Phoenix and then to destinations across the United States, Phoenix police Lt. Vince Piano said Thursday.

As we see from the next quote migrants using these smugglers must worry about being kidnapped by rival smugglers. They are also held until they can pay for being brought into the country. Why would somebody put themselves through this? It’s certainly not in an attempt to scoff at U.S. laws. They are obviously very desperate to come here and are willing to risks their safety and lives to do so. Truly very few of us have had to make such a tough decision or have been in that type of situation.

The investigation led to the discovery of 13 “drop houses” in Phoenix where human smugglers hold customers until they pay up and are sent to their final destinations. The area is believed to have about 1,000 drop houses.

——————————————————————-

Drivers were paid to bring the immigrants by van to Phoenix, and other drivers were used to spot law enforcement vehicles and protect rival smugglers from forcing them off the road in an attempt to kidnap and extort their customers, he said.

Here’s a post where I wrote about this before.

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2 thoughts on “Police: Immigrant Smuggling Ring Busted – AP

  1. “Truly very few of us have had to make such a tough decision or have been in that type of situation.”

    My wife and I have.

    She is from Ecuador, we met and married in Europe.

    The first year of our lives together was spent without money and resources in a foreign country with a language we didn’t speak. It took us months of working and saving money, and deportations, and dozens of trips to the U.S. embassy, and phone calls to whoever would listen and in the end nearly double the $2500 you spoke of above in fees and resources, but we finally got our visa to come here legally.

    I know what it is like to be hearded around like cattle, I understand the uncertainty of deportation , especially being deported without money in your pocket, but the one thing I understand the most is that immigration laws are put into place to protect the immigrant primarily and the country secondarily. Without those U.S. immigration laws, the process they provide, and the outlet they gave us via the U.S. consulate, my wife and I might be impoverished european “migrants” sucking resources from the government there or possibly worse.

    When someone breaks a law, they are a law-breaker. It’s really simple. You don’t convince me using emotional pleas…I lived through those moments and came through the other side, legally.

    My wife and I have two children and have been married for 10 years now.

    She is a proud American citizen…who votes.

  2. I applaud your persistence and am glad you made it through so much to get here. I congratulate you on your marriage and children – I’m sure you have a lot of love in your world. However, I don’t feel your desire to come to the United States should have been so difficult.

    You stated:

    I understand the most is that immigration laws are put into place to protect the immigrant primarily

    How can an immigration system “protecting” immigrants not allow them here in the first place. Truly immigrating to the United States is not very easy. With the quota system many people can’t come here at all.

    If you care to give more details about your experience I believe it would be wonderful to read and would probably benefit many people going through the same experience.

    I’m sorry you feel the way you do about undocumented migrants. They are certainly welcome here as far as I’m concerned and the only reason they are here illegally is because our immigration system needs to be corrected to meet the standards of this country’s foundation.

    I agree that when someone breaks a law they are a law breaker. However, there are many laws that don’t make sense and a law is simply an act of a pen enforced by guns and the threat of living in cement cages. If we were all better to one another we wouldn’t need so many laws.

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