A national security specialist is calling attention to a Texas development that allegedly offers cheap land with high interest rates to unlawful migrants in a community outside of Houston.
Colony Ridge, located roughly 20 miles north of Houston in Liberty County, allegedly allows those looking to move into the area to bypass certain requirements needed for many other housing options, as reported by The Dallas Express.
The development is operated by William “Trey” Harris, who reportedly offers the land through the developer Terranos Houston, which translates to “Houston Land.”
Todd Bensman, a national security fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies, told The Daily Wire that plots of land can be purchased for incredibly low prices, but the land will often come with interest rates as high as 15% since “the loan is directly from the developer.”
“Because with a traditional bank loan you need to be able to show that you have a credit rating and proof of income,” he explained.
Bensman made an appearance on Fox News and said that the development of this community has been “going under the radar for 10 years now,” adding that there are likely thousands of acres currently under development.
Michael Yon, an independent journalist who has reportedly made multiple trips to the community, told The Daily Wire, “They’re actually building a city. I don’t know how many live there now, but this is going to be big enough for 200,000 people.”
While there is no exact figure available, current estimations place the total population of the community at roughly 75,000 people, according to the Daily Mail.
Bensman said on Fox News that local law enforcement told him four different Mexican cartels are operating out of the community, adding that many people choose to move into the area since the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement does not enforce the law in that community.
“There’s very thin law enforcement presence in that area,” Bensman told The Daily Wire.
“It’s appealing because they plan to live and work illegally. That means that they probably have to break a whole lot of different kinds of laws in order to buy vehicles and drive the vehicles and maybe show documents to potential employers. When people buy here, they’re buying peace of mind from law enforcement.”
Rep. Brian Babin (R-TX) has also voiced concerns about the community, reported The Daily Wire.
Babin said he has also heard that “cartels are playing a role in this area,” noting, “It was very concerning to fly over it. It’s got an enormous footprint. In the three years since I last saw it, it looks like it’s pretty much doubled in size.”
In response to allegations about the community, officials from Colony Ridge spoke with The Center Square.
John Harris, CEO of Colony Ridge, told The Center Square that the claims are “grossly misleading and unsubstantiated.”
“Terrenos Houston doesn’t need to advertise in Mexico or anywhere outside of the U.S.,” said Harris, per The Center Square. “The vast majority of our customers are from Houston and Harris County.”
Harris added that the area is completely safe and features “the highest number of officers per capita in Liberty County.”