Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council Shawn Moran told Fox News that the violent MS-13 gang is exploiting the chaos on the U.S. border to recruit new juvenile members.
“We know the cartels were exploiting this and continue to exploit this crisis in south Texas, it makes sense that MS-13 and other gangs would do the same,” said Moran.
According to Moran, the gang has been using a Red Cross phone bank on the border, originally intended for unaccompanied minors to use to contact relatives: “These phones are being utilized by gang members to recruit, to enlist, to pressure people, other juveniles into joining the MS-13 gang.”
And, Moran explained, border security is unable to isolate these gang members because they are juveniles, and they are required to treat all juveniles a certain way. “We’re being told we have to look the other way. If we see gang tattoos, we’re not allowed to treat them any differently than anybody else applying to be allowed to stay here or to apply for asylum.”
“It’s a security issue that we feel could really snowball out of control and it would put agents at risk. It puts the other detainees at risk,” Moran said.
Moran described MS-13 as “one of the biggest threats we face on our southern border. They do not hesitate to use extreme violence if necessary. They are considered one of the top threats to border patrol agents.”