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Tony R. Bertolino

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Cameras on U.S.-Mexico Border are Not Proving as Effective to Curb Illegal
by Tony R. Bertolino   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Posted: Wednesday, March 25, 2009

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Countless proposals have been made at both the state and federal level in the past couple of years to address the problem of illegal immigration. Some politicians want to build a fence across our entire southern border. Yet other politicians advocate the idea of punishing employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants.

 

Countless proposals have been made at both the state and federal level in the past couple of years to address the problem of illegal immigration. Some politicians want to build a fence across our entire southern border. Yet other politicians advocate the idea of punishing employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. For obvious reasons, there is no state whose residents are more adamant about finding solutions than the state of Texas.
Last year, Texas Governor Rick Perry decided to harness the vigilante spirit that exists among some Texans and install video cameras along the southern border that could be monitored by watching camera feeds on a home computer. Unfortunately, it appears that our observation efforts have fallen quite short of expectations.

The State of Texas received a $2 million federal grant to install surveillance cameras along the U.S.-Mexico border, with objectives for the program being set by the Texas Border Sheriffs Coalition. An investigation into the program was recently published, and the results are far from impressive. While the coalition hoped to make 1200 arrests in its first year as a result of citizen tips, there have only been three arrests in the first six months. They planned to install 200 cameras, which would constitute one camera for every six miles of border, but so far only thirteen cameras are up and operational, leaving 80 miles of border between each camera. With these numbers as evidence, the case that federal funds are being used effectively is a difficult one to make.

Despite these initial disappointments, Governor Perry remains committed to the program. As his spokeswoman, Katherine Cesinger, stated, he sees the camera as a way of "utilizing technology so you don’t have to pay for an extra set of eyes." Opponents argue that Gov. Perry is simply trying to win favor with conservatives who have strong feelings about illegal immigration and needs to admit that the program has little to no effect on real border security.

At Bertolino LLP, we know that immigration law is a hot topic in Texas and we have San Antonio immigration attorneys who specialize in this controversial area of immigration law. We also have Austin immigration lawyers and Houston immigration attorneys who can assist. If you are facing charges of being in this country illegally (i.e., removal proceedings or deportation proceedings), or if you need help completing the paperwork that confirms your legal status, our immigration lawyers can help. Please contact our Austin, Houston, or San Antonio office to discuss your situation. http://www.belolaw.com

Web Site: Bertolino LLP


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Reviewed by Jennifer Lawson-Perez 5/17/2009
I have wished for 3 years that there was a legal specialty of Immigration Law that represented asylum applicants with "difficult cases." Because having heard so many attorneys tell us that they couldn't represent us for that reason, I began to wonder if there was due process for every asylum applicant.

We came to the border asking for help in trade for information. The cameras wouldn't have stopped us, because we came here to save our lives, and the I.C.E. agents told us they would help us. How could we have known they would take the information and deny we gave it? With the holocaust of cartels in Mexico, I suspect more and more may enter this way. How will cameras stop this?
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