“The child is the treasure,” the migrant trafficker says. “It’s not the adult who takes the child…[t]he child takes the adult.”
In a sometimes frighteningly candid interview with the Los Angeles Times, a Guatemalan national who calls himself Hugo talks about the role of traffickers — also known as coyotes — in moving individuals and families northward along the highly fraught route from Central America through Mexico to the United States.
Much maligned as they are, Hugo avers that coyotes are largely reliable, and help guarantee safe passage for trusting migrants.
Among the key services a coyote provides is to arrange payoffs to both government officials and criminal gangs; they also facilitate transport, food and lodging.
He acknowledges that the current immigration crackdown has been effective, and is hurting his business.
And, he has nothing but scorn for the highly publicized D.I.Y. migrant caravans, which avoid hiring traffickers, and end up exposing migrant routes and methods to public and official scrutiny.
Source: Los Angeles Times