Shift to Armed Human Smuggling in South Texas Worries Feds

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Over the course of  a week, law enforcement in Roma, Texas, documented two armed human smuggling incidents. One is particularly raising eyebrows among authorities.

Most of Miguel Aleman, Tamaulipas, is now under the control of Los Zetas aka Cartel Del Noreste (CDN). This is leading to a shift in smuggling tactics.

The first incident of concern took place on September 26, when a camera captured migrants crossing the border illegally. The image identified a red, four-door GMC truck. As law enforcement responded, the driver sped away until a bailout was performed. A search of the vehicle led to the seizure of two firearms and a small amount of crack cocaine.

The second incident reportedly occurred on October 2, where human smugglers recorded themselves heavily armed and operating more than 80 miles into the U.S. near Hebbronville, Texas. The incident likely originated in Roma, Texas, due to the vicinity and level of human smuggling activity occurring in the area.

Law enforcement are attributing this tactical shift to the change in cartel turf leadership immediately south of the border.

Miguel Aleman, for decades, sat under the control of the Gulf Cartel (CDG). Smugglers on both sides of the Rio Grande maintained affiliations with the CDG. The emerging heavy-handed tactics are a clear sign to CBP officials that the Zetas are changing the rules. Federal officials also believe that the greater the weaponry correlates with the value the cartel places on the person being moved. It is not out of the question that the customer could have been a family member or high-ranking associate of a Zetas leader.

Jaeson Jones is a retired Captain from the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Intelligence and Counterterrorism Division and a Breitbart Texas contributor. While on duty, he managed daily operations for the Texas Rangers Border Security Operations Center

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