When one thinks of illegal immigrants Buffalo is not the first city to come to mind. Most think of the southern states that border Mexico. According to StateMaster NY is actually third on the list of states with the most illegal immigrants at 489,000, preceded by Texas at number two with 1,041,000, and California comes in first with 2,209,000. So is it still hard to believe that Buffalo would have illegal immigrants? While we may not as many immigrants here illegally in Buffalo as other parts of the state such as NYC, there are places for these illegal immigrants to find work.
Last summer a Depew man was arrested for harboring illegal immigrants and making them work for low wages. Simon Banda is the alleged ringleader, who owned four restaurants in the WNY area. The arrests of 56 people came from an early morning raid in July that actually spanned five states. Banda would pay the smuggling fee, $3,000, and require the workers to pay him back, along with paying for their housing which was also controlled by operators of the ring. The workers made less than $300 a week. You can find the rest of this story on WKBW.
An article published in the Buffalo News reports that three illegal immigrants were arrested after a traffic stop turned into a police chase. Niagara County Sheriffs stopped a vehicle driven by a Jesus Garcia-Rosario, who presented an expired Mexican driver’s license. The three passengers in the back seat could not provide any identification and two men fled the vehicle. The Niagara County Sheriffs were joined by State Police and Border Patrol Agents in the search. The three passengers were taken into custody by Border Patrol Agents and the driver is facing a deportation hearing.
It is customary in the summer months to see immigrants working in the fields in northern Niagara County where many people are here working on legitimate visas. However when the summer is over and work visas have expired many workers stay here illegally.
I think it is a misconception that there are illegal immigrants only in the Southern states. If you would like to report any illegal immigrants in the WNY area phone the Buffalo Field Office Director, located at 130 Delaware Ave. Buffalo NY 14202, at 716-551-4741 X2500. Some argue that the hands of the Border Patrol and ICE agents here in the northern part of the United States are tied because most of the federal funding to fight immigration goes to the southern Border States. What is your take on illegal immigrants here in WNY?
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