U.S.

Migrants thrust by US officials into the arms of the cartels

Posted On: Nov 16, 2019   |   Posted By: My Sanantonio

NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico - The gangsters trawling Nuevo Laredo know just what they're looking for: men and women missing their shoelaces.
Those are migrants who made it to the United States to ask for asylum, only to be taken into custody and stripped of their laces - to keep them from hurting themselves. And then they were thrust into danger, sent back to the lawless border state of Tamaulipas.
In years past, migrants moved quickly through this violent territory on their way to the United States. Now, due to Trump administration policies, they remain there for weeks and sometimes months as they await their U.S. court dates, often in the hands of the gangsters who hold the area in a vise-like grip.
Here, migrants in limbo are prey, and a boon to smugglers.
This story is part of an occasional series, “Outsourcing Migrants,” produced with the support of the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.
They recount harrowing stories of robbery, extortion by criminals and crooked officials, and kidnappings by competing...

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