The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced on Tuesday that its Joint Task Force Alpha had dismantled a human trafficking organization near the Texas-Mexico border.
The anti-trafficking task force, which was formed by the Biden administration last year, launched an operation it says led to the arrest of eight accused smugglers.
The smuggling organization was allegedly led by 31-year-old Erminia Serrano Piedra, also known as “Irma” and “Boss Lady”.
An indictment unsealed on Tuesday alleges that Piedra and his co-conspirators, who have been arrested in various US states, facilitated the illegal and forced transport of migrants to the United States for profit.
Migrants from Mexico, Guatemala and Colombia reportedly paid the organization to transport them illegally to the United States without consenting to the “deplorable” conditions to which they were subjected while being trafficked.
“At DHS, combating human trafficking is a moral imperative, a law enforcement priority, and a necessity for our national security,” said Deputy Secretary John Tien of the Department of Homeland Security. , which is working with the DOJ to lead the joint task force.
“We are unwavering in our commitment and send a strong message: if you manipulate, jeopardize and take advantage of migrants in difficulty, we come looking for you,” he said.
Other defendants include Kevin Daniel Nuber, Laura Nuber, Lloyd Bexley, Jeremy Dickens, Katie Ann Garcia, Oliveria Piedra-Campuzana and Pedro Hairo Abrigo.
“The Ministry of Justice will continue to use all its resources to combat groups of human smugglers and traffickers who endanger our communities, abuse and exploit migrants and threaten our national security,” the Minister said. Attorney General Merrick Garland in a statement on the case. .
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