Friday, April 12, 2024

The Many Ways A Porous Border Means Crime Without Boundaries: It’s Undeniable that the Massive Surge in Immigration Since the Biden Administration Relaxed Border Policies has been Accompanied by Much More Crime, However Unquantifiable

Mani Albrecht/U.S. Customs and Border Protection/Flickr
The Many Ways A Porous Border Means Crime Without Boundaries
It’s undeniable that the massive surge in immigration since the Biden administration relaxed border policies has been accompanied by much more crime, however unquantifiable.
When President Biden’s supporters attacked him for describing the man who allegedly murdered Georgia co-ed Laken Riley as an “illegal,” they shined a light on one of the most contested words in American politics.
The progressive push to describe border crossers as undocumented or unauthorized can also serve to downplay and obscure the massive issue of crime perpetrated and spawned by the influx of millions of migrants since Biden was elected — often in ways that leave the migrants themselves as victims.
While migrant advocates argue that illegal arrivals commit crimes at lower rates than Americans, the claim is unverifiable because the federal government and most states do not break down crimes by immigration status.
Criminologists also note that it ignores the vast web of statutory crimes concurrent with illegal immigration — drug smuggling, human trafficking, child labor violations, prostitution, the black market in employment, and so on.
What remains undeniable by the law of averages is that the massive surge in immigration since the Biden administration relaxed border policies — a surge it puts at more than 4 million people, but other sources put at millions more — has been accompanied by much more crime, however unquantifiable.
Millions of migrants, though not all, run afoul of laws by their situation more than by overtly malign criminal intent. But their first step across the border is a lawbreaking one, and it is often followed by life on the law’s margins: living in the U.S. without insurance or proper work papers, providing illicit labor for unscrupulous or blasé employers, turning to black markets for counterfeit Social Security cards, and often becoming targets for robbers or extortionists. Their desire to come to America creates a vast pool of criminality involving them or those illegally profiting from them.
“On some criminal matters, like homicides, we’ve got a good sense of the scale there whether we solve them all or not,” said Alex Nowrasteh, a vice president at the Cato Institute who studies the economic impact of immigration. “But some of this other stuff is like all black markets in that it is opaque behavior. We don’t know how much crime there might be and in a sense I think it’s sort of unknowable.”
An outer layer of this criminal onion is the so-called “coyotes” who smuggle migrants to the southern border. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, which is sympathetic to the plight of refugees, paints a brutally stark picture of the exploitive lawbreakers who lurk behind the caravans and trucks and trains heading north.
“Some criminal groups view migrants as simply one of many commodities to be smuggled, alongside drugs and firearms,” it noted in a 2018 report. “Since the smuggling of migrants is a highly profitable illicit activity with a relatively low risk of detection, it is attractive to criminals.”
The United Nations also acknowledges the near impossibility of quantifying these criminal enterprises. “Assessing the real size of this crime is a complex matter, owing to its underground nature and the difficulty of identifying when irregular migration is being facilitated by smugglers,” it said.
In order to pay back these smugglers or the people willing to “host” them in the U.S., many migrants — no one knows how many — are often dragooned into illicit behavior. --->READ MORE HERE
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