The Miami Herald reports that earthquake survivors are being smuggled across the border, then put to work as prostitutes, peddlers and beggars.
“All the officials know who the traffickers are, but don’t report them. It is a problem that is not going to end because the authorities’ sources of income would dry up,” said Regino Martínez, a Jesuit priest and director of the Border Solidarity Foundation in Dajabón, a Dominican border town.
Martínez has denounced the problem from the pulpit, to community groups and to the heads of CESFRONT, the Dominican Republic’s Specialized Corps for Borderland Security.
Leaders in both nations, following the catastrophic earthquake that killed an estimated 300,000 people, pledged to protect children from predatory smuggling, a historic problem.