142 Immigrants Imprisoned for Border Crossing


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CNN is reporting that 142 illegal immigrants crossing the border from Guatemala into Mexico were arrested and are now being held in jail.  Under the Mexican Constitution and statutes, intentionally crossing into Mexico without proper documentation is a felony subjecting the violator to immediate imprisonment.  In addition, imprisonment follows even in circumstances where the illegal immigrant has paid a bribe which is often “required” to cross the border.  http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2008/02/mexicos-southern-border/cynthia-gorney-text.html

Immigration issues between Guatemala and Mexico have become such an important issue that the Mexican government is in the process of erecting a giant wall on the border of the two countries.  http://www.examiner.com/immigration-reform-in-national/hypocritical-mexico-is-now-building-their-own-wall-on-border-with-guatemala-press-ignores  The head administrator of the Mexican Superintendency of Tax Administration, Raul Diaz, has confirmed that his government is building a wall in the state of Chiapas, along the Mexican/Guatemalan border. In an interview with the International Press Service Diaz stated that the official reason is to stop contraband from coming into Mexico, but as Diaz admitted: “It could also prevent the free passage of illegal immigrants.”

Just last month, 513 people were apprehended in two trailers in Chiapas, bordering Guatemala. They represented a cargo worth at least $3.5 million. Another trailer filled with 219 people was discovered in January.  http://www.mb.com.ph/node/322482/mexico-di

Jessenia and Armando López crossed the Suchiate River from Guatemala into Mexico on a hired raft of wood planks lashed to giant inner tubes.  The raftsman pegged them immediately as undocumented migrants and charged them ten times the usual fare, even though Jessenia thought she had disguised herself as a local lady by wearing platform shoes and carrying all her belongings in a homemaker’s plastic shopping bag.  http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2008/02/mexicos-southern-border/cynthia-gorney-text.html

Unfortunately, many of these immigrants are fleeing into terrible treatment at the hands of the government.  Jose Luis Soberanes, president of the CNDH (National Commission of Human Rights) found that “the Mexican government mistreats ‘indocumentados’ that cross its territory, it keeps them in jails, in overcrowded conditions, many times without food, without medical attention and overall, violating their human rights.”  http://vdare.com/awall/060518_memo.htm

Sometimes the treatment is even more shocking.  A 15 year old illegal immigrant girl from El Salvador arrived to a Mexican metropolitan area and wound up working as a prostitute. Her pimps kept control of her by threatening to report her illegal status if she didn’t do what they said. Finally, she was fed up with her harsh treatment and sexual abuse. She escaped and turned herself into immigration authorities. The immigration authorities imprisoned her, incommunicado, in a cell in the basement of a government building, with a man as her roommate. The press didn’t discover it for two months. [Siglo – Mantienen incomunicada a una salvadoreña By Luis Alberto Morales Cortés, April 30th, 2006]


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