As cartels continue to devastate American communities with fentanyl, they’re now finding more customers for the drug in northern Mexico, Noticias Telemundo reported.
Migrants and locals just south of the border, in areas like Tijuana, Mexico, are seeing more users on the streets turning to the drug, the report detailed.
Moderate Senate Democrats joined Senate Republicans on Thursday in an effort to block President Joe Biden from lifting Title 42, a measure enacted during the pandemic that allows for the quick expulsion of migrants.
The bipartisan group of lawmakers proposed legislation that would halt the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from ending the policy, which the agency announced would cease on May 23, without an adequate plan in place.
Border officials encountered 164,973 migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border in February, according to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announcement Tuesday.
The figure represents a 7% increase from January’s encounters, according to CBP.
CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus said in a statement that February’s overall operational numbers result from “the continued economic rebound from the depths of the COVID pandemic, with CBP officers processing more than 2.8 million shipments in legitimate trade valued at more than $236 billion.”
Republican lawmakers have demanded the Biden administration answer questions regarding alternate forms of identification the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) says it accepts from migrants traveling throughout the country.
Republican Texas Rep. Lance Gooden, along with 21 other Republican lawmakers, sent a letter Wednesday to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas raising concerns over a number of DHS documents migrants can use as identification, including certain arrest warrants, and the methods through which they are vetted.
The letter, exclusively obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation, also seeks information on how border patrol agents and others are able to verify a migrant’s identity when issuing the documents in the first place.
Republican lawmakers are raising concerns over illegal migrants without identification traveling on commercial flights throughout the country, according to an email exclusively obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The email revealed that the national vetting center used by TSA processed over 42,000 non-citizens and non-U.S. nationals requesting document validation between the first of the year and mid-October.
Republican Texas Rep. Lance Gooden has been probing the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) as part of his office’s investigation into whistleblower documents alleging an operation to move migrants across the country without standard documentation.
At least 54 people were killed and more than 100 others were injured when a truck full of migrants crashed in southern Mexico on Thursday, The New York Times reported.
The accident occurred when a truck carrying more than 100 people overturned, the head of the state Civil Protection Service, Luis Manuel García Moreno, told Milenio TV, the NYT reported. It is one of the deadliest accidents involving migrants in decades.
The truck contained passengers who were mostly migrants traveling from Central America, and it was moving at an “excessive” speed when it rounded a sharp curve and flipped, a witness told García, the NYT reported. The truck then crashed into a pedestrian bridge and construction close by.
As another caravan of Central Americans and Haitians heads north to the U.S. southern border, the Biden administration is making little apparent effort to comply with a federal judge’s order to reinstate the Remain in Mexico Policy, while also claiming to be focusing on border security.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has repeatedly sued the administration over immigration, says the administration is inviting illegal aliens to the U.S. while also making it harder for Border Patrol agents to do their jobs.
A caravan of roughly 2,000 Central Americans and Haitians left Tapachula, Mexico recently — the same day President Biden met with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. Instead of sending a clear message to the caravan to turn around, the leaders sent an implicit message that the border is open and the Remain in Mexico Policy remains inoperative.
New migrant campsites have sprung up around Mexico throughout 2021 as migrants have grown uncertain of whether they’ll be able to remain in the U.S., the Associated Press reported Thursday.
Camps are full of migrants, including many children and those who can’t apply for asylum in the U.S. because of Title 42 restrictions, who have to wait in Mexico as their cases proceed through U.S. immigration courts, according to the AP. Title 42 is a Trump-era public health order implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that prevents some migrants from remaining in the U.S. while seeking asylum and allows border officials to rapidly expel most migrants from the country.
Hundreds of Mexican law enforcement officials raided an encampment in Tijuana and required migrants to register for credentials or evacuate the area on Oct. 28, the AP reported. The migrants who registered and stayed were soon surrounded by a mile of chain-link fence.
The Biden administration said it’s no longer releasing migrants into the U.S. without court dates, CNN Politics reported Tuesday.
Migrants will be issued formal notices to appear in an immigration court when released from federal custody instead of notices to report, which direct them to check in with an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office within 60 days, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said, according to CNN.
Thousands of migrants are stranded at the Belarus-Poland border, with Belarus and Russia performing military demonstrations amid rising tensions in the region, CNN reported Friday.
Up to 2,000 people are trapped between Poland and Belarus, enduring hunger and hypothermia in the freezing forests and camps along the border, CNN reported. The number of migrants at the border has the potential to grow to 10,000 people in the near future if the situation doesn’t change, according to Belarusian authorities.
Congressional Republicans say they will fight a White House plan to pay up to $450,000 in reparations to migrants separated from their families under the Trump administration after entering the country illegally.
After The Wall Street Journal reported on the plan earlier this week, President Joe Biden called the report “garbage,” only to be corrected by his spokesperson the next day.
At issue is former President Donald Trump’s policy of prosecuting all adults who entered the country illegally, in accordance with federal immigration law, including those with children. The Biden administration rescinded the policy, along with many other immigration enforcement efforts.
Federal law enforcement officers arrested more than 17,300 migrants with past convictions of other crimes attempting to cross the border illegally last fiscal year. That’s up from 9,447 in fiscal 2020.
The federal government’s fiscal year runs from Oct. 1 through Sept. 30.
An additional 8,979 in fiscal 2021 were of migrants with outstanding arrest warrants against them from other law enforcement agencies.
Migrants are sleeping outside immigration offices waiting to check in with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, the Houston Chronicle reported on Friday.
Migrants started spending the night outside the Greenspoint Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office in Houston, Texas, so they would be guaranteed an appointment the next day, according to the Chronicle. Around a dozen migrants from Central America and Venezuela set up camping chairs or decided to sleep in their cars on Thursday.
The Biden administration is considering paying illegal immigrant families who were separated at the border under former President Donald Trump’s policies up to $450,000 per person, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.
The illegal immigrants filed a lawsuit claiming the federal government detention resulted in major psychological trauma, according to the WSJ. Most of the families were made up of one parent and child who could receive around $1 million in payouts, though the amount could vary by family depending on the circumstances.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) represents some of the families involved in the lawsuit against the Departments of Justice, Homeland Security (DHS) and Health and Human Services, the WSJ reported. Around 940 families filed claims and the number of those who might qualify for the settlement is expected to be lower.
The Mexican federal government committed to deporting migrants caught traveling north to their home countries, the U.S. Embassy in Mexico announced on Wednesday.
The Biden administration also plans to reinstate former President Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy next month, though the success of the program is largely dependent on Mexico’s cooperation, CBS News reported.
Two U.S. Border Patrol agents have been fired in connection with a probe that found roughly 60 of them committed misconduct while participating in a private Facebook group that mocked migrants and lawmakers, investigators said Monday.
Most agents’ penalties were significantly reduced from those recommended by an internal agency review board, according to a House Oversight and Reform committee staff report obtained by the Associated Press.
Texas Republicans described President Joe Biden’s immigration policies as reckless and criticized him for claiming that he has been too busy to visit the southern border since taking office in January.
Biden said Thursday night that he “should go down [to visit the border] but the whole point of it is I haven’t had a whole hell of a lot of time to,” during a CNN town hall. The last time Biden was near the border was when he flew into an airport in El Paso, Texas, where his motorcade took him to New Mexico for a campaign event in 2008, according to The Washington Post.
The ongoing mass illegal migration crisis is best understood as an existential conflict between two forces: Americanists vs. Transformationists. These forces, in turn, represent two competing regimes or ways of life. But first, let us review what has been going on at the U.S.-Mexico border since Joe Biden’s inauguration.
The September surge of thousands of illegal Haitian border crossers from Chile and Brazil camped under an international bridge in Del Rio, Texas is simply the latest debacle in the never-ending migration crisis. Month after month, day after day, the border between the United States and Mexico becomes more porous, more chaotic, more lawless, and more violent. Nine months after January 20 there is no end in sight as record numbers of illegal migrants pour into the United States. In early October both NBC News and the Daily Mail reported that, according to the Department of Homeland Security, up to 400,000 illegal migrants could cross the border this month, doubling the 21-year record set in July.
The Biden administration has been flying migrants in the dead of night to various locations throughout the United States and potentially to Ohio, according to a new Fox News report.
First uncovered by the New York Post, the federal government has used a charter plane to fly migrants from the U.S. Southern border in an attempt to resettle them in other locations.
Tens of thousands of migrants from other countries are making their way north to the southern border, an open border activist and government officials warn.
Irineo Mujica, Director of Pueblo Sin Fronteras, an NGO that provides “shelter and safety to migrants and refugees in transit” and accompanies them “in their journey,” says a new Haitian caravan is making its way to the U.S. border from Tapachula, Mexico.
He also says 800 Haitians and Central Americans are crossing the Guatemalan border every day making their way north.
Erika Mouynes, Panama’s foreign minister, says the Biden administration was warned in advance about thousands of Haitians heading to the U.S.
About 15,000 migrants recently arrived in Del Rio, Texas. According to the Department of Homeland Security, some were deported but the majority were released into U.S. communities while they await their asylum claim to be adjudicated.
According to Axios, Mouynes said an estimated 60,000 more migrants are making their way to the U.S. Many of the Haitian migrants travel through Panama to get there.
Alejandro Mayorkas, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), announced on Monday that the rate of illegal aliens carrying diseases with them into the country is “approximately 20 percent,” even though many such illegals have not been properly tested, as reported by the New York Post.
“When one is speaking of 7,000 or 7,500 people encountered at the border every day,” Mayorkas said at a press conference, “if one takes a look at that system, it is not built for that in a COVID environment where isolation is required.”
Mayorkas did not expand on what he meant by “illness,” and whether he was referring to the Chinese coronavirus or other diseases. However, he did mention that he does not expect to see a “tragic rise in the Delta variant” (also known as the India variant) following the latest surge at the border, which saw over 10,000 illegals, mostly from Haiti, enter the country illegally.
Border Patrol agents requested additional federal aid in Del Rio, Texas, months before thousands of migrants set up a temporary camp under an international bridge and overwhelmed immigration officials, CNN Politics reported Thursday.
Border officials reported an increase in migrants crossing the Rio Grande River earlier in the summer but didn’t know more than 14,000 migrants would end up setting up camp under the bridge, according to CNN Politics. On June 1, the union representing Del Rio Border Patrol agents asked for additional technology resources to help agents quickly process large groups of migrants in the field before sending them to a station.
“This way, we can at least get part of the process finished before they even get to the station instead of wasting that time,” said Jon Afinsen, president of the National Border Patrol Council in Del Rio, in an email exchange with regional Border Patrol management, CNN Politics reported.
A ruling from a federal judge on Thursday led Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to abandon his plan to close six entry points on the southern border amid a surge of migrants, the El Paso Times reported.
The U.S. District Judge for the District of Columbia blocked President Joe Biden from turning away migrant families with children under 18, citing a health order related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the El Paso Times reported. The order will take effect in 14 days.
Abbott announced Thursday he had directed the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas National Guard to close six entry points along the southern border in a statement obtained by Fox News.
Monthly border encounters with migrants attempting to illegally enter the U.S. decreased slightly in August for the first time since President Joe Biden took office but remain near record highs, according to Customs and Border Protection data.
Border officials encountered nearly 209,000 migrants at the southern border in August, down from a record high of 213,500 people in July, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Officials encountered a record-high number of migrants compared to 50,000 in August 2020 and 62,700 in August 2019.
However, a “larger-than-usual number of migrants” are attempting to illegally cross the border several times so “total encounters somewhat overstate the number of unique individuals arriving at the border,” CBP announced. Officials encountered 156,600 unique individuals in August and 25% of them had at least one prior encounter in the last 12 months.
MCALLEN, Texas — Customs and Border Protection agents are so overwhelmed with the number of migrants arriving at the southern border they’re having a hard time verifying whether some illegal migrants are minors or adults, agents told the Daily Caller News Foundation on Tuesday.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials are supposed to conduct extensive interviews with migrants they suspect of lying about their age, a senior agent told the DCNF. The agents spoke to the DCNF on the condition of anonymity since they were not authorized to speak on the matter.
“In the past, our intelligence would interview these subjects until eventually getting them to admit they had falsely claimed to be minors. But now with the sheer volume of people coming in and people that we have to process and move, that part of the equation is just a hindrance and would create a bottleneck,” the senior CBP agent told the DCNF. “In other words, our processing machine has now switched gears to quantity over quality. Sad.”
A federal trial court in Texas ruled against the Biden administration’s directives to catch and release some migrants on Thursday.
A Texas federal judge blocked Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials from enforcing the Biden administration’s Jan. 20 and Feb. 18 memoranda prioritizing certain migrants for detention over others, granting Texas and Louisiana’s motion for a preliminary injunction, according to the court opinion.
“The States point out that the priority categories enumerated in these Memoranda omit certain others—namely, aliens convicted of serious drug offenses, aliens convicted of crimes of moral turpitude, and aliens subject to a final order of removal,” the opinion continues.
MCALLEN, Texas — Several illegal migrants told the Daily Caller News Foundation that they aren’t responsible for spreading COVID-19 in America.
Migrants who illegally crossed into the U.S. near the Hidalgo Point of Entry on Aug. 10 in a group of about 20 people said they weren’t worried about catching COVID-19 at any point in the journey to their final destinations in America.
“Everywhere people are getting infected,” a vaccinated man from Ecuador told the DCNF after illegally entering the U.S. near the same location on Aug. 7. “It’s honestly not that the migrants are bringing the virus. It’s everywhere.”
MCALLEN, Texas — Some migrants who spoke to the DCNF said they were motivated to come to the U.S. by the Biden administration, while others cited death threats from “narcos” and disaster in their home countries.
“Suddenly, the situations during the previous years weren’t like this one. This year was much more difficult,” a Honduran migrant named Javier told the DCNF after illegally crossing into the U.S. near the Hidalgo Point of Entry early Tuesday morning.
Javier said increasing “crime and a lot of insecurity” including “extortions and death threats from the cartels” motivated him to leave Honduras. He said it took him a little over a month to reach the U.S.
MCALLEN, Texas — Migrants who illegally crossed the border into the U.S. said immigrating legally is only an option for privileged people.
“We all don’t have the same capacity or the same opportunity,” a Honduran man who had just crossed into the U.S. illegally with a group into La Joya, Texas, told the Daily Caller News Foundation Saturday night. “Only privileged people can cross legally.”
Migrants may pay smugglers between $7,000 and $14,000 to enter the U.S. illegally, and the fee includes multiple tries if the person is deported from the U.S., Reuters reported. Becoming a U.S. citizen, however, takes years and can cost between $4,000 and $12,000 according to the Economic Times.
On Wednesday, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it had intercepted 834 unaccompanied illegal alien minors at the southern border, the single largest such number of children apprehended under the Biden Administration thus far, the New York Post reports.
Officials with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had previously estimated that over 19,000 illegal minors were caught at the border over the month of July, surpassing the previous record of 18,877 in the month of March. The months seen then have seen numbers ranging from 14,000 to 17,000, marking a total of over 84,000 from March to July.
In addition, the number of illegal minors being held in CBP custody has more than quadrupled since May, when only around 635 children were being held; by Wednesday, that number has risen to over 2,784. The 30-day average of child apprehensions has increased to 512 per day.
In a meeting at the White House with Democratic lawmakers, Joe Biden reaffirmed his support for the radical notion of including mass amnesty for illegal aliens in the proposed reconciliation bill, according to CNN.
Biden met with 11 lawmakers – five senators and six members of the House – on Thursday to discuss a possible amnesty deal following the latest blow to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. DACA was an executive order signed by then-President Barack Obama in 2012 to provide blanket amnesty to illegal aliens who came into the country as minors.
Judge Andrew Hanen, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, ruled earlier this month that as the law had been implemented via executive order only after its legislative counterpart, the DREAM Act, failed to pass through Congress, the law was unconstitutional. The order blocks any future illegals from applying for the amnesty, but does not affect current or past applicants.
Border officials seized 4,000% more fentanyl in 2021 than in 2018 as the border crisis continues, NBC News reported Tuesday.
Cartels have taken advantage of increased federal resources allocated for migrant encounters to smuggle fentanyl into the U.S. between ports of entry, according to NBC News. Border officials have found 41 pounds of fentanyl in fiscal year 2021, compared with nine pounds in 2020, two pounds in 2019 and one pound in 2018.
“For the first time, we’re starting to see these tactics where fentanyl is being smuggled between ports of entry,” Chief Border Patrol Agent Gloria Chavez said, NBC News reported. “Cartels are very creative. They find ways to intimidate migrants and find ways to illegally have them transport that narcotic into the United States.”
The Biden administration is expected to launch a government-wide effort to make up to 9 million immigrants living in the U.S. citizens, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced Friday.
President Joe Biden asked federal agencies to work on “welcoming strategies that promote integration, inclusion, and citizenship,” through an executive order, according to CNN. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the agency’s plan to “breaking down barriers to U.S. citizenship” and promote naturalization for immigrants who are eligible.
“The idea is to find a whole-of-government way to reach out to people who are able to naturalize,” a USCIS official reportedly told CNN. The official said there are around 9 million immigrants living in the U.S. as lawful permanent residents who could be eligible for citizenship.
The Biden administration solicited information that could help form a National Case Management Program to track up to 100,000 migrants released into the U.S. annually, documents uploaded Monday show.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) would manage the program aimed at migrant adults aged 18 to 21 and other “vulnerable populations” to make sure the migrants are safe and prepared to attend their immigration court hearings, documents show. The request is solely for information gathering and does not mean the federal government will contract with any company that responds.
The program would “ensure that the program participants are safe, stable, and able to prepare for and attend their upcoming court dates and other immigration obligations and have access to legal and other services as needed while in the community,” according to the documents.
Former President Donald Trump said Wednesday the southern border is “more dangerous than it’s ever been” after the Biden administration reversed most of Trump’s immigration policies, Fox News reported.
The Biden administration ended Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” program on June 1 and is eyeing an end to public health order Title 42 that allows border officials to rapidly expel most migrants to Mexico at the end of July, Axios reported June 20. Biden also said he would stop construction on the border wall, prompting Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to announce plans for the state to begin construction on its own wall, the Daily Caller News Foundation reported.
“There has never been a border so secure as the southern border that we had, and now it’s opened up,” Trump said, according to Fox News. “Now we have an open, really dangerous, border. More dangerous than it’s ever been in the history of our country, and we better go back fast.”
More than 3,200 migrants were attacked in Mexico while waiting to enter the U.S. since President Joe Biden took office, an advocacy organization announced Monday.
Around 3,250 asylum-seeking migrants who were either prevented from entering or expelled from the U.S. to Mexico were targets of kidnapping, rape, human trafficking, sexual assault and armed assault from Jan. 20 through June 17, according to advocacy group Human Rights First.
“Violent attacks against asylum seekers and migrants unable to reach safety in the United States due to the failure of the Biden administration to uphold refugee law and restart asylum processing continue to rise,” the organization said in a statement.
The Biden administration is considering ending a Trump-era public health order that’s allowed border officials to rapidly expel most migrants from Mexico on July 21, Axios reported Sunday.
The public health order, Title 42, was implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 and border officials have expelled tens of thousands of migrants under the rule, according to Axios. Immigration advocacy groups and Democrats have criticized the Biden administration for the policy and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials protested using the order to expel migrants arriving at the border, Axios reported.
“It’s not a tool of immigration policy,” Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said of Title 42 during a trip to Mexico City Tuesday, Reuters reported. He added that the order would remain in effect as long as it would benefit public health.
Immigration cases deciding if migrants will be legally allowed to stay in the U.S. have doubled since 2017, according to migration data released Monday.
Over 1.3 million cases are pending, with more than 110,000 pending in New York courts alone, according to Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC). Migrants wait an average of two and a half years for a judge to decide their case, Axios reported Monday.
“The number of pending deportation cases more than doubled during the Trump administration, but the court backlog still continues to grow under the Biden administration,” TRAC Assistant Professor Austin Kocher told the Daily Caller News Foundation Tuesday.
Thousands of migrants ordered to remain in Mexico as their asylum cases were processed were returned to the country indefinitely despite the Biden administration admitting most of the remaining cases into the U.S., the Associated Press reported Wednesday.
President Joe Biden ended former President Donald Trump’s Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) requiring migrants to “Remain in Mexico” and has admitted thousands of the 26,000 migrants with active cases into the U.S., the AP reported. Judges have terminated proceedings in nearly 6,700 MPP cases, according to Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC).
“Things have changed under the Biden administration and we’ve seen a little over 8,000 individuals previously in MPP have their cases transferred out of an MPP court, which suggests that they have been allowed into the US under the more standard asylum processing procedures,” Syracuse University Assistant Research Professor Dr. Austin Kocher told the Daily Caller News Foundation Thursday.
An increasing number of migrants from India, Romania, Haiti and Cuba are attempting to enter the U.S. through the southern border, Axios reported Wednesday.
Migrants are reportedly flying to Central America since U.S. courts are backlogged with asylum cases preventing them from living or working in the country as their case is processed, according to Axios. Border officials encountered over 33,000 migrants from countries other than Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador attempting to enter the U.S. in April, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
Nearly 500 attacks targeted asylum seekers waiting or stranded in Mexico since President Joe Biden’s inauguration, Human Rights First reported Tuesday.
Migrants waiting at the U.S.-Mexico border reported at least 492 instances of violent attacks including kidnapping, rape and assault, according to Human Rights First. Over 16,000 asylum-seeking migrants at the Mexican border were on a “metering” waitlist to request protection in the U.S. as of February.
More than 172,000 migrants were encountered at the southern border in March, according to Customs and Border Protection.
Officials apprehended nearly 19,000 unaccompanied migrant minors, around 53,600 family units and over 99,000 single adults, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Encounters were up 71% in March from February.
RIO GRANDE VALLEY — The overcrowded Customs and Border Protection facility holding migrants in Donna, Texas, was not designed for long-term detention, National Border Patrol Council spokesman Chris Cabrera told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is holding migrants in overcrowded cells constructed from clear plastic curtains that contain a toilet, a water fountain and concrete benches, Cabrera told the DCNF on an exclusive tour near the border. Migrants are being held for long periods of time in a facility that was intended for short-term detention, Cabrera added.
Customs and Border Protection is detaining as many as 9,000 migrants daily and over half of them are unaccompanied minors and families, a senior U.S. Border Patrol official said Friday.
Around 6,000 illegal immigrants were apprehended Thursday including 1,900 unaccompanied migrant minors and families who were processed under Title 8, according to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) senior official. Title 42 is still used to expel most single migrant adults and U.S. officials are working with other countries to identify the migrants coming into the U.S., the official said.
The surge of migrants at the U.S. southern border has dramatically increased in recent months. According to U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas, “We are on pace to encounter more individuals on the southwest border than we have in the last 20 years.”
In February, changes in U.S. border policy and the search for a better life incentivized more than 100,000 migrants to travel to the United States and cross the southern border.
Customs and Border Protection has held at least 800 unaccompanied migrant minors in custody for over 10 days, Axios reported
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) can legally hold unaccompanied minors for 72 hours, though over 3,300 were in custody over the limit as of Saturday, according to an internal Department of Homeland Security document obtained by Axios. Over 2,200 unaccompanied minors were held for more than five days and around 820 were in custody for over 10 days.
The number of unaccompanied minors in CBP custody for over 10 days has quadrupled in the last week, Axios reported. Only around 180 unaccompanied minors were in CBP custody for over 10 days as of last Monday.
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said Tuesday that the number of migrants apprehended at the United States’ southern border is on track to hit a two-decade high.
“We are on pace to encounter more individuals on the southwest border than we have in the last 20 years,” Mayorkas said in a statement. “We are expelling most single adults and families. We are not expelling unaccompanied children.”
Changes in Mexican asylum laws and modifications to U.S immigration policy combined with exploitation by smugglers are causing an increase in migrants at the southern U.S. border seeking entry, according to reports.
The Biden administration suspended the ‘remain in Mexico’ program allowing some asylum seekers to enter the U.S. and ended a policy preventing unaccompanied minors from coming into the U.S., The Washington Post reported. Mexico implemented laws banning migrant families from returning if facilities are full and smugglers in Guatemala are exploiting people saying the administration is taking a softer approach towards asylum seekers.
A federal judge on Friday ordered the release of children held with their parents in U.S. immigration jails and denounced the Trump administration’s prolonged detention of families during the coronavirus pandemic.
U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee – who was appointed by President Obama in 2009 – penned the order that applies to children held for more than 20 days at three family detention centers in Texas and Pennsylvania operated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Some have been detained since last year.