MATAMOROS, Tamaulipas — Fearing stiffer immigration enforcement in the coming months, approximately half of the Mexican nationals who had traveled through this city on their way to their hometowns claim they will not be returning to the United States, city officials said.
In recent weeks, the Matamoros city government has been preparing logistical and security measures to accommodate not only the returning travelers, but also for a possible increase in deportations, said Matamoros Mayor Jesus “Chuchin” De La Garza.
According to De La Garza, at least 50 percent of the Paisanos who have crossed through the three international bridges in Matamoros have reported to authorities that they will not be returning to the U.S. and plan on seeking jobs in Mexico.
Known in Mexico as Paisanos, every year, groups of legal and illegal immigrants travel through this and other border cities during the holidays on their way to their hometowns. The name Paisano comes from a government program aimed at easing the customs and tax process that the Mexicans face when they travel home. In years past, customs officers, local police and other officials were known for demanding bribes and extorting the travelers.
In preparation for the expected increase in the number of returning locals and deportees, De La Garza has been meeting with Mexico’s Regional Security Team and U.S. law enforcement.
“We still do not know the impact that the arrival of the new U.S. administration will have in regards to the number of deportations, but we do have to be prepared in order to handle such events in an orderly fashion,” De La Garza said to Breitbart Texas.
For years, the deportation of Mexican immigrants has caused problems due to the lack of job opportunities in border cities, leading many to join the ranks of the various drug cartels that operate throughout Mexico. According to Mexican authorities, many of the deported immigrants often come from U.S. prisons and jails who are sent back after completing a sentence for crimes in that country. The backgrounds of the deported migrants makes them an attractive recruitment option for Mexican cartels.
Editor’s Note: Breitbart Texas traveled to the Mexican States of Tamaulipas, Coahuila and Nuevo León to recruit citizen journalists willing to risk their lives and expose the cartels silencing their communities. The writers would face certain death at the hands of the various cartels that operate in those areas including the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas if a pseudonym were not used. Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles are published in both English and in their original Spanish. This article was written by “J.A. Espinoza” from Matamoros, Tamaulipas.