By: Mark Fitzgerald
Help wanted: drug smugglers. Mexican authorities say the newspaper classified ads that narcotraffickers are running to recruit so-called mules are not quite that un-subtle — not yet anyway.
Mexican intelligence sources told El Universal, the big Mexico City daily, that they’ve detected the ads in the major dailies of Ciudad Juarez, the border city with El Paso, Texas. The ads look to recruit students who have passports and valid visas by offering to pay well during school breaks.
Students who respond are then conned into driving vehicles with drugs in them into the United States, El Universal said, quoting an unnamed intelligence official.
Not surprisingly, many of these innocents abroad are nabbed at the border. Mexican authorities came across the classified ad connection when parents complained their kids had gone on vacation to the U.S., and never returned. When they went to the United States to investigate the disappearance, they discovered the youths had been arrested for drug smuggling.