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U.S. Crackdown On Human Trafficking Leads To 192 Arrests, Seizure Of Over $625,000 In Illicit Profits


WASHINGTON, July 22 (Reuters) - U.S. officials have made almost 200 arrests and seized more than $625,000 in illicit profits in a month-long crackdown on human smuggling in response to an influx of illegal immigration into Texas, the Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said the campaign underscored the government's pledge that U.S. borders were not open to illegal immigration "and that if you enter the United States illegally, we will send you back."

"Equally important, those who prey upon migrants for financial gain will be targeted, arrested and prosecuted," he added in a statement.

"We are focusing on the pocketbooks of these human smugglers, including their money laundering activities in the United States - working with our Mexican and Central American partners to track, interdict, and seize the money flowing through Mexico and Central America."

Johnson said the government sent extra personnel to Texas' Rio Grande Valley in late June to combat human smuggling operations on the southwest U.S. border.

"Less than a month into this operation, 192 smugglers and their associates have already been arrested on criminal charges, more than 501 undocumented immigrants have been taken into custody and more than $625,000 in illicit profits have been seized from 288 bank accounts held by human smuggling and drug trafficking organizations," the secretary said.

Immigration enforcement authorities, it said, "will continue to prioritize cases involving smuggling or transporting of undocumented individuals, including minors, into the United States."

The Obama administration has been seeking to deal with a surge of undocumented children across the southern border.

During the nine months ending June 30, more than 57,000 children were detained at the U.S.-Mexico border, most from Central America, and double last year's count, according to U.S. government data.

President Barack Obama meets the leaders of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador on Friday to discuss cooperation in dealing with the flow of child migrants. (Reporting by Peter Cooney; Editing by Ron Popeski)
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arcoregar July 23 2014 at 7:56 AM

"Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said the campaign underscored the government's pledge that U.S. borders were not open to illegal immigration." Huh? What? Did I miss something? Illegals have been crossing our borders for years and years...again...did I miss something?

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1 reply
terrie_henderson arcoregar July 23 2014 at 11:53 PM

Strange news is tons of illegals are crossing in right now. Makes no sense just like the story that Russia wasn't responsible for the M71 crash when yesterday they said that Russia was responsible. All i know is someone is being very irresponsible.

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pdbliz July 23 2014 at 8:36 AM

Again People,,,,YOU VOTED FOR THIS MAN TWICE,,,,,SAME RESULTS BOTH TIMES.!!!
Sadly,,,If he run today,,,you would vote same again

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6 replies
PERFORATOR July 23 2014 at 8:24 AM

Maybe the whitehouse could hire one of these traffickers, they claim to have caught, and put him to work arranging to break our Marine out of that Mexican jail and smuggle him back across the border. Until that happens dont be blowin' smoke about what wonderful things are being done!

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1 reply
Franco PERFORATOR July 23 2014 at 12:34 PM

Nah, in this case, you have to bribe the very "bribable" Mexican pooolice. :O(

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Roger July 23 2014 at 7:40 AM

So, when is he going to send all those kids back? I heard on the news last night they (the kids) are being united with family members and given nearly two years to report for their immigration hearing. That is bogus, they are getting scattered all over the nation and the government is hoping they show up in two years for their deportation hearing. Yeah right! As for the traffickers take their money to pay for the transportation of the humans they traffic back to their legal homes, throw them in jail and throw away the key.

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5 replies
roarner July 23 2014 at 10:29 AM

kcarthey 47 minutes ago
If you put up another candidate or slate as bad as McCain/Palin or Romney/Ryan, you bet we would. However, we have legions of qualified candidates in the wings and you have Rick Perry
Hey kcarthey. I guess you haven't looked at yourself in the mirror lately. Your subversive and unproductive left wing pals, have done nothing in almost six years in powers, except downgrade the country. If Romney/Ryan would have won the country would have been better off and we wouldn't have had all the scandals and intentional craziness we have now. All You Left Wingers know is how to subvert and be masters of deceit to trash this country. History will hold this administration totally responsible for what's going on, and not Bush. Perry is doing more to stop this left wing created crisis than the white house is.

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3 replies
pdbliz July 23 2014 at 8:19 AM

First,,,I seen on the news,,,,that,,,,most of the illegals are not kids,,but 16 and older.....
Second,,,,Human Trafficking is done by our own GOVERMENT,,,,So,,,Are we going to Washingto DC and start making arrest in the WHITE HOUSE.???

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3 replies
giabeanbean July 23 2014 at 11:04 AM

If we close the border securely human trafficking at least to the US along the bordering states would not exist or be extremely seldom.

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pdbliz July 23 2014 at 8:22 AM

CURRENT LAWS are being broken daily by WASHINGTON....
We have laws to protect the people of America...
Both parties are not observing them...
DEMS AND REPS,,,,,BOTH HAVE DIRTY HANDS.!!!!!
The people are getting the shaft.!!!!!

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Rob & Kathy July 23 2014 at 11:28 AM

This is government sponsored human trafficking.
Obama should be arrested for human trafficking.
Obama has encouraged and facilitated it.

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jlkitts75 July 23 2014 at 8:38 AM

I would like to say this is a good start, but it is a drop in the bucket. There are thousands of american employers who are happy to employ the victims of human trafficking in service and construction jobs. The visa system is set up to allow and encourage it, with no checks and balances on the J-1 visas and other means that are used.

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