According to recent reports, members of the Tren de Aragua, a transnational criminal gang from Venezuela, may have arrived in the United States. The gang is known for kidnapping, drug trafficking, and contract killings, and its presence is a growing concern for law enforcement agencies. The Miami Herald reports that one gang member has been charged with the murder of a retired Venezuelan police officer in Florida. The man was abducted and killed by Yurwin Salazar, who is identified as a member of Tren de Aragua. The Herald notes that many gang members have joined the immigration wave fleeing Venezuela and set up operations in neighboring countries.
The Tren de Aragua gang operates as an umbrella organization for smaller gangs specializing in various crimes, including kidnapping, extortion, drug trafficking, prostitution, robbery and murders for hire. Customs and Border Patrol have detained 38 suspected Tren de Aragua members in the previous fiscal year. Experts believe the gang members are traveling from Colombia to the United States. The arrival of a member of the violent Venezuelan gang indicates that dangerous individuals have made it through the border and are in South Florida.
Media reports describe the gang members as violent and involved in sex trafficking, and Chicago police officers have been warned to be on the lookout for them among the thousands of illegal immigrants sent to the city. The presence of Tren de Aragua members coincides with videos showing thousands of illegal immigrants from Venezuela trying to reach the U.S. southern border. Thousands attempted to hop aboard trains near the central Mexican city of Irapuato, and drone footage showed them on trains heading to Eagle Pass, Texas.
Homeland Security announced that nearly half a million Venezuelan illegal immigrants would be given permission to live and work in the country legally. This influx of migrants and criminals can be attributed to the Biden administration’s open border policies. These policies have allowed for increased migration and the arrival of dangerous gang members.