a trick or device intended to attract attention, publicity, or business.
synonyms: publicity device, stunt, contrivance, eye-catching novelty, scheme, trick, dodge, ploy, stratagem
Joaquín Archivaldo Guzmán Loera, a.k.a, “El Chapo,” is the former leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, called by the US Justice Department “one of the world’s most prolific, violent and powerful drug cartels,”” according to CNN, controlling roughly 40%-60% of Mexico’s drug trade, earning $3 billion annually, known for bribing police guards, using intricate tunnels to evade law enforcement and escape prison cells.
The US indicted Guzman in 2009 and he was finally arrested in Mexico in January 2016. On Jan 19th of that year, Mexico agreed to extradite Guzman to the United States to stand trial.
The full indictment against Guzmán alleges he helped export hundreds of tons of cocaine into the US. He faces 17 charges.
The indictment lists 84 times Guzmán and associates are believed to have shipped cocaine to the US – on 18 March 2007, they’re alleged to have been behind one shipment of 19,000 kilos (42,000lb).
He is also accused of conspiring to manufacture and distribute heroin, methamphetamine and marijuana, and of ordering killings.
It says he employed hitmen to carry out “hundreds” of murders, assaults, kidnappings and acts of torture on rivals.
The US is also seeking to seize $14bn in “drug proceeds and illicit profits” from Guzmán, but it is not clear if they will ever succeed.BBC News.
On April 25, 2017, Ted Cruz introduced the bill “Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order Act” (H.R. 2186), the EL CHAPO Act, co-sponsors by 11 House Republicans that would “reserve any amounts forfeited to the U.S. Government as a result of the criminal prosecution of “El Chapo” (formally named Joaquin Archivaldo Guzman Lorea) and other drug lords for border security assets and the completion of the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.”
Cruz adds, “Fourteen billion dollars will go a long way toward building a wall that will keep Americans safe and hinder the illegal flow of drugs, weapons, and individuals across our southern border.”
By May 5, 2017 Cruz’s much touted EL CHAPO Act was submitted to the subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security and subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, to linger in dust on the proverbial shelf of inaction.
After being held in custody for two years in the US, Guzman’s trial began November 13, 2018 in a Brooklyn court in New York City.
CNN Report: Traffickers at the El Chapo trial say drugs aren’t smuggled through open parts of the border
As the trial of Guzman continues on, CNN reports, according to the prosecution’s witnesses, former convicted cartel members, “most drugs are smuggled into the United States onboard fishing boats, trains, tractor-trailers and ordinary cars that come into the country at legal ports of entry.”
In the politically charged atmosphere fueled by constant barrages of misleading and false statements made by the president of the United States in bids to procure border wall funds from congress, what was conspicuously absent from any testimony in the El Chapo trial was that none of the government’s own witnesses have testified about using unwalled sections of the US-Mexico border.
In the new Congressional session, with a Democrat majority House, while in its third week of a partial government shutdown, Cruz, on Jan 8, announces he has “reintroduced” his EL CHAPO Act to pay for Trump’s The Wall (TM).
Last week I reintroduced the EL CHAPO Act which would reserve any amounts forfeited to the US gov as a result of criminal prosecution of “El Chapo” & other drug lords for border security assets and the completion of the wall along the US-Mexico border. –> https://t.co/SndC56CiYz pic.twitter.com/hffoQCpJx4— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) January 8, 2019
Who did he introduce it to? Will there be someone in the House who will co-sponsor it for him and introduce it there as in 2017?
Senator Ted Cruz is asking his supporters to “sign up” to become “citizen cosponsors” of a dead-on-arrival bill he wrote that looks to use money seized from Mexican drug lord Joaquin Guzman, commonly known as El Chapo, to pay for a border wall.
Once a “citizen co-sponsor” submits their name, phone number and email address to Cruz, they’re led to a page asking them to “ensure more conservative victories in the future” by setting up a monthly donation to his campaign fund.Newsweek
After digging around, I eventually ended up at Ted Cruz for Senate website, which is where he helpfully
funnels directs to his blue checked verified Twitter account which funnels directs to the Facebook page called American Voices ran by The Daily Caller and to this website, “BUILD THE WALL & MAKE EL CHAPO PAY.”
Build the wall and make El Chapo pay for it! Become a Citizen Cosponsor of Ted Cruz’s EL CHAPO Act and make your voice heard in the Senate.Paid for by Ted Cruz for Senate
At which point you sign the petition by entering your name, phone number and email address and select if you would like to receive SMS from Senator Cruz. Then you are directed to the donation page.
Newsweek continues, while raising funds with citizen-co-sponsors, Cruz recently threw in support for a “comprehensive bill that would supply $25 billion for the wall by increasing fines for entering the U.S. illegally or for overstaying a visa and by denying food stamps and other welfare benefits to immigrants living in the U.S. illegally,” and while illegal immigrants are not usually eligible for federal government benefits, “Republican backers of the bill say it could save $33 billion over 10 years.”
Setting aside the controversy of
legalized government theft seizing of property without being charged for a crime, asset forfeiture would not be the mechanism to pay for any of Trump’s border wall, according to the Washington Post, and even if it could, according to the government’s own numbers, the cost of Trump’s proposed 2000 mile wall estimate from Homeland Security in 2017 was $21.6 billion, ten times the amount of forfeiture funds from the Justice Department.
“Can the federal forfeiture money be put toward the wall”? No, not according to federal law 28 U.S. Code § 524.
[M]oney from the DOJ’s forfeiture fund can only be put toward certain specified uses, including maintaining the fund itself, paying overtime and salaries of law enforcement officers, paying informants and upgrading law enforcement vehicles. Similar rules govern the money in the Treasury Department’s forfeiture fund. Absent congressional action, authorities wishing to appropriate money for a wall from either fund would have to justify that use under existing statutes, and it’s unclear whether they’d be able to. ABC News’s Tara Palmieri has reported that Justice Department officials are “fiercely against” using DOJ forfeiture money in this fashion.Washington Post
To hear Cruz tell it, that money is in the bag and being counted.
Donating to Ted Cruz’s campaign coffers isn’t the issue, but he should have more respect for them, and himself, to at least be honest. It was always dead-on-arrival.
I don’t think we will stay too tuned on this one.
Back in reality, for a look at some different perspectives.
Even though Sheriff Keith Hughes says he supports Trump “100%” he still says “to hell with the wall,” that he would rather see money spent on more people and technology.
Interview with Special Agent in Charge in Phoenix, AZ: Why a wall won’t solve America’s drug problem.
From the other side, here is a recent series of videos posted from former Texas US Rep O’Rourke (D-TX) released as a counter to the Trump WALL (TM). If he would consider getting rid of the music choice they might come across as more serious and effective with their information instead of sappy and playing the emotionlism gimmick.
For what it is worth, to my knowledge, to date no environmental impact studies have been done, not on flooding, not on wild life migration patterns, nor on air currents, nothing for Trump’s The Wall by the administration.
Reporting from NBC News (video) breaks down new reports from the CBP “numbers on immigrants in terrorism database stopped at southern U.S. border.”
In July of 2017, the State Department said, “There was no credible information that any member of a terrorist group has traveled through Mexico to gain access to the United States.”