Criminal organizations trafficking women, children, families and single adults over the U.S.-Mexico border earned as much as $14 million a day in February, according to border patrol sources.
“Trafficking is a multibillion-dollar industry,” said former Tucson Border Patrol Chief Roy Villareal, who retired in December after 30 years with the agency. “A lot of these vulnerable populations use their life savings. Some are essentially indentured servants and they’re working off this debt for a long period of time. In other cases, some of these migrants are asked to transport narcotics or some form of crime to work off a different part of their debt.”
The human smuggling windfall comes as U.S. taxpayer costs for the border crisis continue to spike, topping $5 million a day, based on 2019 figures provided by Health and Human Services that put daily “influx” shelter costs at $800 per migrant. Additionally, last week the Biden administration awarded a $86 million contract for hotel rooms to hold 1,200 migrant families as the crisis exceeds ICE holding capacity.
Additional costs will include overtime and hotel costs for the hundreds of agents reassigned to Texas from other areas. For context, in 2019 Congress appropriated an extra $4.6 billion to handle a similar migrant surge. In 2014, Congress gave President Obama an extra $2.7 billion to deal with his border crisis.- READ MORE
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