Mexican smugglers have been caught on camera dropping two toddlers over a 14-foot-high border barrier into the US while a mom was assaulted and her six-month-old baby was tossed off a raft into the Rio Grande river where six other migrants drowned.
Disturbing footage released by US Customs Border and Protection Wednesday captures the moment two female toddlers from Ecuador, aged three and five, were dumped over the wall just west of Mt. Cristo Rey, near El Paso, Texas, Tuesday evening.
The CBP said the young children, who are sisters, had been mistreated and abandoned by human smugglers.
The girls, who were rescued by agents and taken to the Santa Teresa Border Patrol Station for medical evaluation, are just two of the record 16,000 children who crossed the US-Mexico border in March.
Thousands of families and unaccompanied children have entered the US along its southern border since Joe Biden took office and vowed to make immigration rules more ‘humane’.
However, the influx has led to a bottleneck at custody centers with migrants penned in to facilities that are at around 1,700 percent capacity while smugglers in Mexico are making a living off exploiting migrants heading north to the US.
Mexican smugglers have been caught on camera dropping two toddlers over a 14-foot-high border barrier into the US (pictured)
Cameras set up along the border caught the moment two smugglers dropped the children from the roughly 14-foot high border barrier under the cover of darkness.
An adult was seen on the Mexico side dangling the first child over the US side before letting go, leaving her to fall to the ground below.
The smuggler repeats this with the second child before they are seen instantly running away from the area with another smuggler back into Mexico.
The CBP said the children were left vulnerable to the desert elements on the ground but were luckily spotted by the camera operator who alerted Santa Teresa agents.
The agents hunted for the children and found them, taking them to a local hospital for ‘precautionary reasons and further evaluation’, the CBP said.
The two sisters were then medically cleared and taken to a temporary Border Patrol facility.
El Paso Sector Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez said she was ‘appalled’ seeing the way the smugglers ‘viciously dropped’ the toddlers.
‘I’m appalled by the way these smugglers viciously dropped innocent children from a 14-foot border barrier last night.
Disturbing footage released by US Customs Border and Protection Wednesday captures the moment two female toddlers from Ecuador, aged three and five, were dumped over the wall just west of Mt. Cristo Rey, near El Paso, Texas, Tuesday evening
The girls, who were rescued by agents and taken to the Santa Teresa Border Patrol Station for medical evaluation, while the two smugglers ran away
‘If not for the vigilance of our Agents using mobile technology, these two tender-aged siblings would have been exposed to the harsh elements of desert environment for hours,’ said Chavez.
‘We are currently working with our law enforcement partners in Mexico and attempting to identify these ruthless human smugglers so as to hold them accountable to the fullest extent of the law.’
The shocking incident came just two weeks after a Texas rangers and Border Patrol agents were forced to rescue a six-month-old baby from the Rio Grande river after smugglers threw the infant to die in the waters.
The horrific incident unfolded back on March 16 in Roma, Texas, after the infant’s mom was assaulted and left with a broken leg by a group of smugglers in Mexico, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
The mother had paid smugglers $3,500 to take her and her baby across the Rio Grande river that borders Mexico and the US, reported KVEO.
Texas DPS Lt. Christopher Olivarez said she had been waiting to cross from Mexico to the US since December and was finally placed on a raft with 67 other adults and 150 children on March 16.
During the journey, one of the smugglers then threw her baby from the raft into the water.
Meanwhile a mom was assaulted and her six-month-old baby was tossed off a raft into the Rio Grande river where six other migrants drowned. Pictured a member of the South Texas Special Operations Group of the Texas Rangers holding the child after it was pulled from the water
The South Texas Special Operations Group, Texas Rangers Division was assisting US border patrol agents at the time.
They spotted the incident and managed to save the infant from the water.
The baby survived and its mother was also rescued from the smugglers.
Olivarez said they were reunited and are now ‘safe’ in Border Patrol custody.
Authorities shared a photo of a member of the South Texas Special Operations Group of the Texas Rangers holding the child after it was pulled from the water.
This week, at least six migrants reportedly found drowned in the Rio Grande river after trying to make the perilous journey toward the US.
The bodies of six migrants were found in a shallow, narrow part of the river by Eagle Pass Tuesday night, according to Newsmax.
The bodies of six migrants were found in a shallow, narrow part of the river by Eagle Pass Tuesday night, according to Newsmax
A family of migrants cross the Rio Bravo river in El Paso, Texas, from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Tuesday
Thousands of families and unaccompanied children have entered the US along its southern border in recent weeks
The horrifying incidents reveal the dangers facing migrants as they try to make their way into the US from Mexico, given both the perilous conditions crossing the rivers on cramped rafts and the dangers of trusting smugglers.
The Mexican government last week vowed it was limiting nonessential travel on the Guatemala border, shutting down migrant crossings and deploying security forces to clampdown on the flow of migrants from Guatemala into the country before people head north into the US.
But the reality is smugglers make a living off passing migrants entering Mexico, passing through the country and crossing into the US.
Around 16,000 minors have crossed the US-Mexico border in March, with 5,767 children in CBP custody on Sunday, according to CBP data.
Additionally, there are 11,886 children in the custody of Health and Human Services, meaning the Biden administration has more than 17,500 children in custody.
On Tuesday, the Biden administration finally allowed journalists inside the Donna facility in Texas for the first time, after weeks of shutting the media out and releasing their own photos.
It revealed more than 4,000 migrants, including children and families, crammed into pods with the facility now at 1,700 percent capacity.
Media were allowed in to see the border facilities on Texas this week, with shocking scenes like the one above at the Donna Department of Homeland Security holding facility (file photo)
Children are being crammed into the at the shelters like the one above, the Donna Department of Homeland Security, for weeks on end after a huge increase in March in the number of unaccompanied migrants
Border guards say 14 per cent – roughly one in seven – of the migrant children have tested positive for COVID while photos also show detainees being treated for lice, amid fears of an outbreak.
Two thousand children have already overstayed their 72-hour legal limit and at least 39 have been stuck in the cramped quarters for two weeks.
US border officials estimate that up to 184,000 unaccompanied migrant children could arrive at the US-Mexico border this year, according to internal government data reviewed by Reuters.
If accurate, it would be higher than any other year on record since 2010, when CBP began to fully track apprehensions of unaccompanied children.
The next-highest annual total occurred during a spike in 2019 under Donald Trump when around 76,000 unaccompanied children were taken into custody at the border.