CORINTH, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Governor Greg Abbott sounded the alarm once again Tuesday, Jan. 11 about human trafficking.
“We must stand unified against human trafficking in Texas and work to end the exploitation of women and children in our state,” he said.
His remarks came during the Denton County Mayors Crime Prevention luncheon.
Governor Abbott said last year, the legislature passed and he signed multiple laws cracking down on human trafficking and the deadly drug fentanyl.
“This is deadly and it is dangerous and we in the law enforcement community and you as leaders of your own communities must take a stand against it,” Gov. Abbott said.
He attributed both problems to the record number of people crossing the U.S. southern border illegally.
Federal records show between January 1 and November 30, 2021, 1,855,023 migrants were either apprehended at the southern border or expelled.
Abbott didn’t take questions from reporters following the event.
Denton County Sheriff Tracy Murphree is among those who attended the event.
During an interview afterwards, he expressed concern about human trafficking and fentanyl cases.
“I don’t think we’ve seen the brunt of it yet, but I believe it’s coming. One thing we have been seeing is more and more of our street level drug arrests and things of that nature, we’re finding fentanyl. A year ago, it was few and far between,” Sheriff Murphree said.
The Sheriff also said Denton County Commissioners approved funding for a new human trafficking unit for his department.
“Eventually, it will be a Sgt. and four investigators. We are about half now. We’ll get the other half and their only responsibility will be to investigate human trafficking.”
He said the unit should be complete by October and will work with federal and state authorities along with those in surrounding counties.