Haiti-To-Brazil Migration, Along A New Route For Human Trafficking

3184952655_a19028daf5_bThe scene takes place in utter obscurity. Along a deserted dirt road in this small town in western Peru, a group of 11 Haitians walk down the stairs that lead away from several makeshift bedrooms, hastily built above a bar in the outskirts of Puerto Maldonado. And that quick, they all duck into a waiting van.Such discreet transfers are part of growing illegal immigration in Brazil.In the car hired by a “coyote,” the nickname given to smugglers, the migrants are told to keep the windows shut and covered with sheets. For security reasons, the Peruvian driver argues, it is best that nobody sees them during the journey.Sitting in the last row, 35-year-old Deny tries to control his nerves, counting down the minutes before the end of his week-long journey from Haiti. In four hours, the 11 will have joined thousands who already entered Brazil via groups who control the global traffic of immigrants along the border.Every week, some 400 illegal immigrants, most of them from Haiti and Africa, are smuggled into the country, reinforcing this already strong network that has been allowed to grow along the western border of the Amazon — between Peru, Brazil and Bolivia — thanks to endemic corruption and the blessing of part of the Peruvian National Police. via Human Trafficking

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