Central American crime lords, gangs, and small time operators profit up to $2.3 billion moving Illegal immigrants into the United States, and collect even more from road “taxes” used by smugglers, according to a new study of the business President Trump is seeking to shut down.
Migrants, paying $3,000-$10,000 each, can choose “pay as you go” or “all-inclusive” packages that include travel from their home, not just through Mexico, said the report.
And smugglers also offer “specialized services” for children, pregnant women, and the elderly “that reduce exposure to risks and do not require extensive physical activity, such as scaling walls or extended hikes through remote terrain,” according to a new Rand Corporation report funded by the Department of Homeland Security.
The report, titled Human Smuggling and Associated Revenues shows what Washington and Mexico City are up against as they work to slow illegal immigration, one of Central America’s most profitable businesses.
Rand put a broad value on trafficking at $200 million to $2.3 billion in 2017. It estimated that over 60% of illegals pay a trafficker to get into the U.S.