Chilean burglary gangs causing havoc in Southern California, law enforcement says

Article subtitle: 
The thieves, using travel visas to enter the country, target high-end homes, cars and businesses
Article author: 
Scott Schwebke
Article publisher: 
Fox News
Article date: 
4 May 2019
Article category: 
National News
Article Body: 

Federal, state and local law enforcement agencies throughout Southern California are joining forces to catch a new breed of brazen criminals using travel visas to enter the U.S. to pillage homes, businesses and automobiles.

Dubbed by authorities as “burglary tourism,” sophisticated gangs comprised of Chilean nationals are suspected of committing a string of  thefts in Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Orange counties, including a $1.2 million heist in March at a Laguna Niguel jewelry store ...

“We know it’s a problem that is happening in other states and countries around the world,” FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said ...

The gangs are entering Southern California on ESTA — Electronic System for Travel Authorization — waivers that allow citizens of 38 countries to travel to the United States for tourism or business for 90 days or less without first obtaining a visa, according to authorities....

Also unclear was how the U.S. justice system is dealing with Chilean gang members who have been arrested. At the Torrance homeowners meeting, one resident said, police told them the four arrested a couple months earlier had already fled back to Chile ...