Human Smuggling

Information and statistics about human smuggling and illegal transportion of migrants worldwide. Data about the routes, prices and journey are collected from intelligence agencies, security reports and other public information sources.

Human smuggling of Ethiopian and Somali men brings up to 20,000 people into South Africa for economic reasons each year. The men pay human smugglers up to $2,000 for the journey.

Human smuggling in Malaysia lead to 416 people being caught by government authorities.

Between June 2008 and May 2009, authorities have seized 338 human smugglers and 1,441 guns in arms trafficking operations.

The campaign has also lead to 51 convictions.



In 2009, illegal immigrants were paying human smugglers between $3,000 to $5,000 to be smuggled from Mexico to Los Angeles.

In addition,  32 percent of immigrants in the United States are from Mexico, and more than half of them are considered illegal immigrants.


164,733 illegal immigrants were arrested by the US Border Patrol during the time period of January to March 2009.  In the same time period in 2008, 227,000 people were arrested.

The US Border Patrol currently employs more than 18,000 agents who work the border between Mexico and the United States.


According to the Pew Hispanic Center, there are an estimated 11.9 million illegal immigrants living in the United States in 2008.  8.3 million undocumented immigrants were in the US labor workforce in 2008.

California has the highest number of illegal immigrants living within the state with 2.7 million.

(What is the black market?)


Arrests of illegal immigrants at the US-Mexico border is at the lowest levels since the 1970s, according to the US Border Patrol.  Between October 2008 thorough February 2009, 195,399 illegal immigrants were arrested at the border, a 24 percent decrease from the year before.  For the fiscal year, 550,000 people are estimated to be arrested, the lowest figure since 1975, when 596,796 people were arrested.

The steep drop are due to increased patrols and surveillance by the Border Patrol, and the lack of economic jobs available in the United States.


A report published by the US Justice Department found that there are as many as one million gang members in the United States, belonging to as many as 20,000 gangs.  These gangs and gang members are responsible for up to 80 percent of crime in the communities where they operate. These crimes range from drug trafficking, human smuggling, arms trafficking, and various other criminal activities.


According to Department of Homeland Security, there was a 49 percent increase in the number of illegal immigrants from China in the United States between 2000 and 2007.  At the end of 2008, the department estimates 290,000 Chinese immigrants are living in the United States illegally.


In 2008, authorities in Mexico arrested more than 2,000 undocumented Cubans in the country. This figure is more than triple the number from 2007. In 2004, less than 200 Cubans were arrested for being undocumented in the country.

In 2007, 11,000 Cubans are believed to have reached US soil from Mexico.