Organized crime groups are growing more dangerous, thanks to Trump’s disastrous approach to immigration.
Thanks to Trump's approach to immigration, criminal gangs, human traffickers, and other organized criminal groups are now working closer with each other, and with corrupt local law enforcement at the U.S.–Mexico border.
CNN reports that Trump's decision to prosecute all unauthorized border crossers (ripping families apart in the process), while also eliminating domestic violence and gang violence as grounds for asylum, has created a perfect lawbreaking storm.
Michelle Brané, director of the Migrant Rights and Justice program at the Women's Refugee Commission, told the network, "these policies that claim to be trying to clamp down and secure the border and stop smuggling and stop traffickers... actually empower the traffickers, the cartels, the smugglers."
Because Trump has pushed for tougher anti-immigrant policies, migrants are more desperate south of the border. Smugglers preying on that desperation have increased the cost of passage to the United States from $6-8,000 a few years ago to $12,000 today, according to expert groups.
George Mason University professor and organized crime/immigration expert Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera told CNN that the immigration crackdown has led to "the strengthening of criminal groups that are very organized and smugglers that are transnational and have connections with different groups."
The money the smugglers bring in thanks to the Trump squeeze has now found its way to the entire network surrounding their illicit business. Drivers, guides, corrupt police, and locals with links to criminal groups like drug cartels are now dipping into that new pool of money.
At the same time, smugglers are now able to entice groups who were once able to claim asylum but are no longer allowed to do so under Trump-era rules and policies. What would have been a perfectly legal sequence of immigration in the past under both Democratic and Republican administrations now provides fodder for criminals.
Trump has helped to usher in a new sector of crime, much like prohibition created disastrous criminal networks within the United States.
Immigrants rejected for asylum have also become prime targets for assassination, now that those who are in pursuit know their potential victims are being turned away by America.
This feeds the cycle of those who feel they have no choice but to go to smugglers for help.
Trump, motivated by racism and who insists on demagoguing innocents for political gains for his fellow Republicans, has created a crime crisis.
People's lives are in more danger than they already were – and that was severe.
Whether it is abducting children on the American side of the border or setting them up for massive failure on the southern end, the Trump immigration approach has been a disaster day-by-day.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.