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Farris Calls Visit To Border An “Eye Opening Experience”

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Farris Calls Visit To Border An “Eye Opening Experience”

Putnam County Sheriff Eddie Farris returned from a weekend trip to the Mexico-United States Boarder to see the drug crisis firsthand.

Farris was invited by U.S. Senator Bill Hagerty to find answers as to why fentanyl use has increased in Tennessee.

“The ingredients are coming from China. They’re sending them to Mexico,” Farris said. “They’re actually sending some lab techs down to Mexico. They are putting the components together and produce the fentanyl and get it across the border. Just about every drug that we talk about, a certain percentage has fentanyl in it.”

Farris said he spent 24 hours in McAllen, Texas and made several stops until reaching Laredo, Texas. Farris said he went on nightly patrols with border patrol agents and spent time with state and local law enforcement officials.

“You may ask why is a sheriff in Putnam County going to the border and is concerned about that,” Farris said. “The main reason is our fentanyl overdoses have increased dramatically not just in Putnam County and Tennessee, but all across the United States in the past year and a half.”

Farris said the cartel’s control of the border and current federal policies are what border officials say play a large role in the drug use increase. Farris said the experience was eye opening.

“The cartel controls everything at the border on the Mexican side,” Farris said. “So if you come across the border, you’re having to pay the cartel to come across. Of course the cartel is criminal enterprise on the Mexican side mostly involved in illegal drug activity and human trafficking. It’s a sad deal.”

Farris said he also saw firsthand the impacts of illegal immigration with local ranchers and farmers.

“We think most of them may be Hispanic or coming from Mexico, but the truth of the matter is last year they came from 157 different countries,” Farris said. “So when these people come across, they bring diseases and actually some ticks with them. According to the ranchers, the diseases are transferring to livestock causing problems.”

But at the same time, Farris said the majority of these immigrants are trying to escape to a better life. Farris said however, he learned that last year 19,000 people came across the border with a violent crime record. Farris said 14,000 stayed in the United States.

“As a Sheriff that is very concerning,” Farris said. “They come over and have ties back to the cartel. When the drugs make it across, then we’re looking at more drug dealers and criminal enterprises within our own communities. So those are the things that are on our mind that we are trying to get a handle on.”


The post Farris Calls Visit To Border An “Eye Opening Experience” appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.