In the first three months of fiscal year 2023, the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona filed criminal charges against approximately 1,456 foreign nationals who illegally entered and then returned to the United States. Arizona.
and cases from CBP’s Tucson and Yuma Arizona sectors, which cover the entirety of the Arizona-Mexico border. The figures include only US Attorney’s Office trials and exclude CBP trials.
The Yuma Strip covers the southeastern corner of Arizona – approximately 181,670 square miles of primarily desert terrain split between California and Arizona and 126 miles of the US-Mexico border from the Imperial Sand Dunes in California to the Yuma-Pima County line in Arizona . The Tucson Strip covers most of Arizona from the New Mexico state line to the Yuma County line and shares 262 miles of border with Mexico. Both sectors saw more than 816,000 scares and escapes in fiscal 2022, a record.
Tucson sector chief John Modlin recently testified before Congress that “the vast majority of encounters are single adult males trying to avoid detection. The organizations smuggling into our South are very well organized and resourceful,” Maudlin said, referring to the Mexican cartels. “Everyone who crosses the Tucson Strip must pay these criminal organizations. These criminal organizations use different tactics to illegally move thousands of immigrants across the border.”
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The US Attorney’s Office has prosecuted the cases in partnership with officials from CBP Tucson and Yuma Sectors, Homeland Security Investigations, and others.
“Reducing migrant smuggling and mitigating risks to communities affected by these crimes remains a priority,” the office said in a statement. “Some of these trials are directed against leaders and coordinators of non-US citizen smuggling organizations,” he said, referring to the Mexican cartels. Other prosecutions aim to deter young drivers, who are often recruited via social media platforms, from engaging in this dangerous activity. Trials against young drivers include three cases brought against juvenile traffickers during this time period.”
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Law enforcement officials told The Center Square that they have identified a growing trend of arresting young adults who respond to posts on social media to pick up and transport illegal foreign nationals along borders and drive them north to drop-off points with the hope of making several thousand. dollars to carry the car. When caught, they are charged with multiple people smuggling offenses, which can carry a sentence of up to several years in prison.
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Texas Governor Greg Abbott has proposed increasing penalties for the state’s human trafficking violation to at least 10 years in prison. Others suggested five years in prison for each smuggling charge. On Thursday, Abbott said, “Illegal smuggling is being aided and abetted by the population of the United States. It must stop. We must impose a mandatory minimum prison sentence of at least 10 years for anyone caught smuggling illegal immigrants in Texas.”
Texas law enforcement officials and residents of border communities told The Center Square newspaper that they support the state for tougher penalties for people smuggling.
Published with permission from The Center Square.