RealNews

People-Smuggler Campaigns in El Salvador

Narciso “Chicho” Ramirez has spent time in prison on suspicion of smuggling migrants and was stripped of his U.S. visa. But in his hometown he’s mayor material — the man who helped hundreds of Salvadorans achieve “el sueno Americano” — the American dream. Now running for mayor, Ramirez says he stopped smuggling people in October 2001, when El Salvador made human trafficking a crime punishable by eight years in jail. But his reputation as a “coyote” — slang for smuggler — abides. “Here, they only say good things about Don Chicho,” said Blanca Rosa Coreas, 50. “He’s taken many people north, and they are grateful to him.” Full Story

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