Today's commentary focuses on the successful prosecution of an illegal alien from Mexico, Victor Lopez-Escamilla aka "Mango Chupado," and "Ventura," for producing and selling fraudulent identity documents including counterfeit Alien Registration Cards (Green Cards) and Social Security Cards as reported in an ICE news release. In order to produce documents that could enable his illegal alien customers to game the immigration system and secure employment Lope-Escamilla engaged in identity theft. Here is yet another example of how illegal immigration is anything but a “victimless crime!”
It is important to note that terrorists and criminals are eager to acquire false identities as an embedding tactic that enables them to hide in plain sight.
The news release stated that more than 250 people had their identities stolen as a result of his criminal scheme which purportedly netted him $140,000.00. Certainly the successful prosecution of this document vendor is worthwhile, but when you consider that there are millions of illegal aliens who are working in violation of the immigration laws in the United States and that many of them have been able to purchase fraud documents in order to work illegally in the United States, there is scant comfort to be taken from the report of a single document vendor who apparently sold a relatively small number of false documents.
Here are additional points that are important to consider:
Those who purchased the documents were themselves, illegal aliens. Yet there was absolutely no mention of any of these illegal alien “customers” being apprehended, prosecuted or being deported. By purchasing these documents, these illegal aliens became co-conspirators. By not taking action against these law violators, an opportunity to deter illegal immigration and crimes that illegal aliens commit was lost. Indeed, by not pursuing these individuals quite the contrary happens, illegal aliens are encouraged to violate our borders and our laws.
The administration may tout how many Border Patrol agents have been hired and issue absurd assertions about the “border being secure,” but by not arresting illegal aliens the administration provides incentives and encouragement to ever more illegal aliens to enter the United States in one way or another and violate the immigration laws designed to protect American lives and American jobs.
While the TSA has more than 60,000 employees subjecting airline passengers to ever increasing scrutiny, ICE has all of 7,000 special agents and more than half of them are assigned to conduct investigations of violations of customs laws. Illegal aliens may well be playing a game of “Hide and Seek” but the administration has decided to not really seek, but to just pretend to be interested in that game!
This problem is further exacerbated when cities and states promulgate “Sanctuary policies” to shield illegal aliens from detection by ICE. If there were no illegal aliens in the United States seeking false identity documents, there would be little or no business for fraud document vendors who often commit identity theft, further victimizing lawful immigrants and United States citizens.
Enactment of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) gave rise to a cottage industry, the production of false identity documents. These documents are the lynchpins that hold the immigration system together under the provisions of IRCA. Yet the federal government never addressed this obvious Achilles Heel in the system. No meaningful numbers of additional immigration law enforcement personnel were ever hired to address this serious vulnerability and no routine inservice training was ever implemented to help those agents on the job to combat this serious hole in the system.
For Victor Lopez-Escamilla, his document mill was, indeed, a “cottage industry.” According to the news release he actually produced the documents he sold on the streets of Baltimore, in his bedroom!
ICE often issues news releases to convince us that all is well and that the laws are being enforced. These releases are the equivalent of the tactics used by a used car salesman who spray paints a rusted, wheezing engine under the hood of an old beat up car and then turns back the speedometer to further enhance the illusion that the car is roadworthy!
Illusions will not protect our nation or our citizens. Blue smoke and mirrors do not constitute an effective barrier against those who would enter our country and do us harm!