CRLAFCalifornia Rural Legal Assistance Foundation
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While groups like the CRLAF have directed much of their criticism toward the punitive US immigration policies, some deaths are also blamed on the immigrant smugglers, known as "coyotes" or "polleros." These smugglers charge emigrants as much as US$2,000 for guiding them to US cities.
The CRLAF says at least 77 undocumented immigrants lost their lives attempting to cross into the US through the desert or mountain passes near the California-Baja California border during the first seven months of this year.
In February of this year, the CRLAF, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and other US and Mexican immigrant-rights organizations appealed to the OAS's Inter-American Human Rights Court (IAHRC) asking for a ruling that Operation Guardian violates international human-rights accords.
"The US has abused its right to guard its borders with a strategy that puts migrants in mortal danger by forcing them into mountains and deserts," said the CRLAF's Smith.