Law Enforcement Working to End Juvenile Drug Smuggling
WESLACO – The Cameron County District Attorney says the number of prosecutions of juvenile smugglers from Mexico has to increase.
District Attorney Luis Saenz says minors from Mexico are being paid by Mexican cartels to smuggle drugs.
"Border Patrol was forced to do nothing more than catch them, document them, and release them that same day and as a matter of fact, within a matter of hours they would be released," says Saenz.
He says due to these minor’s age, they have escaped real punishment.
The Mexican Consulate says they were brought more than 800 cases for juvenile smugglers last year and less than one percent faced jail time.
At the moment, there are only 20 beds available for juvenile detention.
Saenz says he hopes the federal government will provide them with more funds to detain, prosecute, and put a stop to the cartel’s exploitation of minors.
Saenz says the problem is only going to get worse, but the days of catch and release are over.
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