There is also a growing incidence of schemes used for the smuggling of migrants, oftentimes related to transnational organized crime networks, as well. Although officials from various countries of the Caribbean have not identified migrant smuggling as an area of significant concern, research shows that the crime is becoming more prevalent in the Caribbean. According to the Global Study on Smuggling of Migrants, while the number of Central American smuggled migrants decreased in 2016, the number of persons being smuggled from Caribbean countries increased. In 2014 and 2015, approximately 14,000 to 18,000 Caribbean migrants were smuggled into Mexico from where they were subsequently smuggled or attempted to be smuggled into the United States. This activity generates revenues estimated at USD 100 million to USD 120 million each year (UNODC, 2018).
Although efforts to combat transnational organized crime at the national level are essential, the complexity of these networks can be particularly challenging for Caribbean countries which have limited capacity to implement comprehensive surveillance and protection systems. In this regard, the development of regional agreements for facilitating cooperation among countries in order to strengthen border security has been crucial.