2009 December 19 Saturday
US Border Patrol Easily Corrupted By Drug Smugglers

Agents with relatives in Mexico get paid off by smuggler relatives.

Along the border, many residents have family members on both sides. Generations of residents have been accustomed to passing back and forth relatively freely, often daily, and exchanging goods, legal or not.

Federal officials believe that drug traffickers are seeking to exploit those ties more than ever, urging family and friends on the American side to take advantage of the hiring rush for customs agents. The majority of agents and officers stay out of crime. But smuggling can be appealing. The average officer makes $70,000 a year, a sum that can be dwarfed by what smugglers pay to get just a few trucks full of drugs into the United States.

An obvious solution: Do not recruit Border Patrol officers from local Mexican border communities. Recruit them from the least corrupt states in the union - near Canada's border.

Of course, to selectively recruit from some populations but not others based on their rack records for less corruption would be politically incorrect. We need to blind ourselves to evidence in the interest of fairness. In early 21st century America prevention of corruption and smuggling is deemed less important than career opportunities for lower performing ethnic groups.

The article reports that recruitment from the border area used to be avoided. But the policy was changed in order to make recruitment easier. Surely in a country with 10% unemployment lots of people could be recruited from, for example, Michigan. $70k per year would sound pretty good to a laid off auto worker.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2009 December 19 03:07 PM  Immigration Law Enforcement

Vorpal said at December 21, 2009 12:32 AM:

One problem is that the Border Patrol wants English-Spanish bilingual officers, so the BP in effect preferentially recruits candidates of Mexican extraction. Remember Ramos and Compean?

Bob Badour said at December 21, 2009 7:04 AM:
One problem is that the Border Patrol wants English-Spanish bilingual officers

I am reminded of the line in Charlie Wilson's War: "You can teach them to type, but you can't teach them to grow tits." I think there's a lesson about honest pragmatism in there somewhere.

rob said at December 22, 2009 8:56 AM:

Obvious solution would be to bill the fence. A real double fence with guard towers on the inner one, and no one crosses the outer fence without getting machine gunned down.

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