The U.S. government just won the El Chapo lottery. Joaquin Guzmán Loera, the Mexican drug kingpin also known as El Chapo has been convicted on ten counts of drug running and will be sentenced to life in prison. This means the man’s ill-gotten gains – a paltry $14 billion — will be confiscated by the Feds, and Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) knows just what to do with it.
Let’s use it to build the wall.
Immediately following word of Guzman’s conviction, the Senator from Texas tweeted, “U.S. prosecutors are seeking $14 billion in drug profits and other assets from El Chapo which should go toward funding our wall to #Secure the Border.”
Wouldn’t that just be too delicious?
Seeing the handwriting on the wall, Cruz introduced a bill last month called the Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order, or “El Chapo,” Act. Cruz hopes to use the money to “offset the cost of securing our border,” according to Business Insider. And he went on Fox News to sell his proposed legislation to the public and his colleagues in Congress:
“These drug cartels are the ones crossing the border with impunity, smuggling drugs, smuggling narcotics, engaged in human trafficking. They’re the ones violating our laws. It is only fitting that their ill-gotten gains fund securing the border.”
The Texas Senator calls for more than just El Chapo money to be directed toward border security. He wants it to apply to any other drug cartel wealth that may be forthcoming as a result of criminal convictions. Liberty Nation’s Legal Affairs Editor, Scott D. Cosenza, weighed in with the following:
“Senator Cruz’s bill is not just about El Chapo’s property but includes any forfeiture commensurate with a criminal drug importation conviction. The requirement that a criminal conviction be present is a key component that keeps this from being akin to the civil asset forfeiture run amok in the states.”
Cruz is urging his colleagues to take swift action and pass his proposed legislation. The senator made his case for passage in a written statement, arguing: “By leveraging any criminally forfeited assets of El Chapo and other murderous drug lords, we can offset the cost of securing our border and make meaningful progress toward delivering on the promises made to the American people.”
El Chapo is but one of the many cartel drug lords who find myriad nefarious ways to scuttle drugs across the border. A colorful character to be sure, Mr. Guzmán is a Mexican national said to have bribed people high up in his native country’s government – including former presidents.
During the 2016 Presidential Campaign, then-candidate Trump often made the case that Mexico should pay for the wall. Senator Cruz’s “El Chapo Act” would go a long way toward fulfilling that promise. It would also provide an end-run around the Democrats, who have maintained that the wall is “immoral” and only in the last few days have presented Mr. Trump with a plan that would provide for approximately 1.4 billion toward securing the southern border.