DEL RIO, TX – According to reports, there is “no question” that amid the crisis at the southern border Mexican cartel activity is “spilling over” into the U.S., FBI Director Christopher Wray said during a House Judiciary Committee hearing held on Thursday.
This comes as reports indicate the situation at the U.S.-Mexican border is growing worse, with Border Patrol agents encountering over 180,000 migrants attempting to cross into the country in May, cementing a steady increase over the previous months, with 178,000 encountered in April and 173,000 in March.
Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA) had asked Wray at Thursday’s hearing if the FBI knew if any of the migrants crossing the U.S. border could be in cahoots with – or in servitude to – Mexican cartels and smugglers, to which Wray replied in the positive.
“Certainly, we have seen quite a number of such instances, absolutely,” he said. “We are pursuing a number of human trafficking task forces, as well as working on certain taskforces with DHS [Department of Homeland Security] to try to address that issue. But there’s no question that the cartel activity on the other side of the border is spilling over in all sorts of ways and you just put your finger on one that is extremely concerning.”
Reports indicate that cartels have been charging massive fees to sneak foreign nationals into the U.S., and that smugglers have been regularly dumping unaccompanied children at the border – some as young as 3 years-old – to be picked up by the Border Patrol, presumably to be reunited with patents who have already snuck in.
In addition, gang members and convicted sex offenders – many of them previously deported – have taken advantage of the recent surge of migrants at the border to attempt to sneak past overwhelmed ground agents regain entry to the country.