Mr. Speaker, over the weekend, I went to the Texas-Mexico border near Laredo. On this, my 20th border trip, I spent time along the river with the Border Patrol.
Los Zetas Mexican drug cartel controls a sophisticated smuggling operation of people and drugs. They have scouts on rooftops on both sides of the border, using cell phones and high-tech equipment to look for the Border Patrol.
Everyone pays to be smuggled across the Rio Grande. The cost is $500 to $800 for a Mexican; $3,000 to $5,000 for a Central American; and $15,000 to $30,000 for Chinese or countries of special interest, like Bangladesh.
Everybody pays. This organized crime gang uses stash houses on both sides of the border to conceal border crossers or drugs.
When the coast is clear, Los Zetas moves people or drugs further into Texas, and then throughout the country. This is a very sophisticated criminal network.
Mr. Speaker, the outlaw Los Zetas cartel makes millions of dollars on our unsecured border. Enough with the rhetoric.
Secure America first.
And that is just the way it is.