KOSA West Texas: Addressing Border Issues in Marfa Schools 10/28/11

The following is a press release from CBP.gov

Marfa, Texas – The U.S. Border Patrol’s Marfa sector, in collaboration with local and state law enforcement agencies, has kicked off ‘Operation Detour’, a public awareness campaign to prevent a trend by drug trafficking organizations that lure young adults into engaging in criminal activity. Operation Detour was conceived and designed by members of the Border Patrol’s Del Rio sector.

“Drug smugglers have increased their efforts to recruit teenagers as smugglers, scouts and lookouts,” said Chief Patrol Agent John J. Smietana, Jr. “Being lured into their trap is a very real danger to our young people with severe consequences. Operation Detour is an effort to point out those dangers and to give kids an awareness of the help that is available to them.”

“We appreciate the willingness of the schools to provide this opportunity and we certainly couldn’t get the message out without the assistance of our partners from the law enforcement and criminal justice agencies,” he said.

The campaign consists of an hour-long program that includes two videos explaining how the drug trafficking organizations are organized and what the consequences are for participating in these organizations. The presentation also includes a slideshow that explains the various criminal activities associated with drug smuggling. Also included is a panel discussion with law enforcement officials explaining how their organizations enforce the law and what the potential penalties are for getting caught in narcotics trafficking.

The program, which is designed for high school students, was presented in Marfa on Monday and will be presented in Sierra Blanca and Van Horn later this week. During the week of May 11, it will be presented in Fort Davis, Valentine, Alpine and Sanderson. Students in Presidio will receive the program the following week.

Participating with Marfa Sector are the Alpine Police Department, Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Field Operations, the Hudspeth County Sheriff’s Department, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Jeff Davis County Sheriff’s Department and the area’s Juvenile Probation Departments. Also the Presidio County Sheriff’s Department, the Terrell County Sheriff’s Department, Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Parks and Wildlife and the Texas Rangers.  Link to article.

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