Criminals seem to have sunk to new lows recently, now even involving children in their schemes to smuggle massive quantities of drugs into the United States. In the latest bust, U.S. Customs officers stopped a woman trying to hide 48 pounds of marijuana beneath the car seats of five young children as they crossed the U.S./Mexican border.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers stopped the 34-year-old Mexican national as she pulled into the Lukeville Port of Entry in Arizona, along Highway 85.
An alert officer noticed a square-shaped object beneath a blanket near the feet of one of the children in the Ford minivan and immediately authorized a search. Officers then uncovered two more packages of marijuana in the vehicle, hidden beneath the car seats of the infant passengers.
In total, officers discovered 48 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of about $24,000 hidden in vehicle. The woman was placed into custody and handed off to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HIS) division, who will likely charge her with drug smuggling. The five children in the minivan were placed in the care of a family member.
As shocking as this might be, this is actually not the first time that young children have been involved in attempts to bring illegal substances across the Mexican border. Just last year, Border Patrol officers stopped a Mexican woman pushing a stroller near the Nogales Port of Entry when a K-9 unit signaled she might be carrying drugs.
After a quick search, it was found that she was transporting the lethal drug fentanyl, and was using two toddlers as cover. According to Breitbart, “fentanyl is 50-100 times more potent than morphine, and 50 times more potent than heroin.”
Had the children come into direct contact with the drug they very likely would have died, and DEA Deputy Administrator Jack Riley explained “it is 40 to 50 times stronger than street-level heroin. A very small amount ingested, or absorbed through your skin, can kill you.”
The profits made from these drugs, once they get into the country, are typically sent back to dangerous cartels in Mexico, where they fuel the ongoing civil war there. Halting the flow of drugs across the border would not just benefit the United States by decreasing the number of dangerous narcotics on our streets, but they would also benefit the people of Mexico by cutting off one of the major sources of funding for the groups that daily murder innocent people across their country.
What do you think of smugglers using their children to carry drugs across the border? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section, and don’t forget to share this with your friends and neighbors to show them how bad things are getting on the border.