Human trafficking across the dangerous Florida Straits
Attempts to cross the Florida Straits continue to cost the lives of Cuban men, women and children, lured by U.S. government policy that encourages illegal immigration
The dangerous human trafficking route across the Florida Straits continues to cost the lives of men, women and children who have disappeared at sea while attempting the hazardous journey, lured by the siren song of the “American dream,” victims of U.S. government policy that encourages illegal immigration, as a weapon in its dirty war against Cuba.
Federal agents recently, arrested three men in the Florida Keys linked to the smuggling of Cuban immigrants, which led to the dismantling of segment of a network involved in this despicable business.
Coast Guard officials reported that their ships have intercepted 107 Cubans thus far this year, surpassing the entire number detained over the previous 12 months, according to media reports.
The mafia that operates this route has secret houses in Miami, a fleet of speedboats piloted by individuals willing to do anything to earn a few dollars, and experienced in this and other illegal activities.
The delinquents establish contact with Cubans living in the United States and offer, upon payment of a large sum of money, close to $10,000 dollars, to transport their relatives from the island’s coastline to Miami.
Another modus operandi consists of contacting persons on the island willing to emigrate this way, via cell phone, the Internet, or an “organizer” who travels to Cuba to directly take charge of the trip.
On March 2, an illegal departure from the northern coast of Villa Clara province was organized in the U.S. using a trafficking speedboat. Two days later, three nautical miles from Cayo Sal, in the Bahamas, the boat capsized, leaving one dead and several missing.
The risks taken by those who undertake such an “adventure” are many. The organizers’ greed is more important than safety and the boats are overloaded to ensure greater profits.
For these traffickers, accustomed to transporting narcotics from South America to the U.S. and confronting the competition with cruelty and violence, the lives of their “merchandise” are worth nothing.
It is well known that the cartel bosses order their minions to sink the boat and leave no witnesses, if law enforcement stops them at sea with migrants on board.
Irregular emigration is constantly incited, while at the same time, agreements reached by Cuba and the United States on this issue are ignored by the northern neighbor; the Cuban Adjustment Act remains in full force; and the economic siege is tightened, regardless of the COVID-19 pandemic, clearly showing who encourages illegal emigration and who paves the way for the tragedies suffered by unwary Cubans on the always dangerous route across the Florida Straits.