Border Security Human Smuggling Texas Rep. Pic
Around 1,500 Migrants Cross From Mexico Into El Paso, Texas: What To Know ev/Unsplash.

The Texas National Guard in El Paso is amping up its crackdown on human smuggling operations at the US-Mexico border. The operations were targeting one route in particular just north of the border wall which was considered to be safe for smugglers to conduct their business. The owner of two abandoned duplexes near Loop 375 South known as the “Border Highway” approached sources and said that his life has been threatened by the cartel since government troops had been conducting raids at the properties, which has led to the arrest of many illegal migrants.

According to the New York Post, Joaquin Villegas, the owner of the decrepit duplex buildings said he has been receiving calls from “Coyotes” or human smugglers, on private numbers. They told Villegas to find a way to get the police off his back or expect some rather unsavory consequences. Illegal migrants who have crossed the border have been using his buildings as a waystation to await the next team of smugglers to pick them up and transport them to the next location. Villegas recalled one incident where he found a group of stragglers who told him that they were paying $2,500 to go to Albuquerque.

The Post also said it encountered six illegal immigrants, one of which was a small child who was wedged through a small opening in the border wall. The migrants were all attempting to reach the city of El Paso before they were confronted by law enforcement officers. They all eventually decided to return to Mexico rather than cross to the U.S. and be taken into custody. Another group of illegal migrants managed to cross the border a little further than the last but were shortly detained by El Paso Sheriff’s deputies as well as troops from the Texas National Guard. The group was said to be sitting on the side of the road, as they awaited to be hauled away by the Border Patrol.

Meanwhile, California has begun to experience an influx of migrant influx near the border as San Diego County is now being flooded with asylum-seekers. The county’s migrant supervisor Jim Desmond said the system is already strained. He wrote on Twitter and said the county was awaiting 235 more migrants to be dropped off at transit stations. Desmond added that the addition of this new batch brings a total of 1,071 people who have been dropped off in the past four days.

“Our system is strained, and this is simply unsustainable,” Desmond said.

Migrants released by CBP out on the street in El Paso
Migrants released by CBP out on the street in El Paso. Photo by: Reuters/Ivan Pierre Aguirre

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