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Border Patrol: Big Tech Platforms Being Used To Recruit Child Smugglers.

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A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol report has revealed that criminal organizations smuggling illegal aliens into America have been relying on social media platforms to recruit minors to carry out their operations.

The report from Texas’ Rio Grande Valley Sector (RGV) Border Patrol notes a “trend of Transnational Criminal Organization’s (TCO) using social media to recruit minors for their smuggling operations.”

The agency links the reliance on social media to the record-breaking numbers of migrants attempting to enter the U.S. illegally under President Joe Biden. “RGV agents have encountered more than 137K migrants between Oct. 1, to Dec. 31, 2021, which is a 163 percent increase over the same reporting period of the previous year,” revealed the agency.

“With an increase in illicit activity, TCOs require more manpower to carry out their operations. Social media has become an avenue for human smugglers to target juvenile drivers. TCOs are luring minors to smuggle migrants across border towns in the Rio Grande Valley and into the U.S. interior with the promise of fast cash,” explained Customs and Border Patrol.

“TCOs convince juvenile drivers that they will not face the same consequences as adults if apprehended or that law enforcement will disengage a pursuit if dangerous conditions are present,” adds the report.

Authorities have arrested drivers working on behalf of TCOs as young as 13-years-old.

RGV Chief Patrol Agent Brian S. Hastings stated: “This is an alarming trend, because many of these teenagers underestimate the severity of the crime. Not only can they be prosecuted and sent to jail, but they also endanger lives through their actions. I encourage parents to talk to their children and educate them on the potential consequences and dangers of this trend.”

The intersection between social media and illegal border crossing follows reports that platforms such as China’s TikTok and Facebook were allowing content from human traffickers on their platforms.


Natalie Winters

Natalie Winters is the Lead Investigative Reporter at the National Pulse and co-host of The National Pulse podcast.

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