Texas law enforcement are on high alert after finding an SUV disguised as a border patrol vehicle. While the energy and oil industries continue to slide, the business of providing shelter for illegal immigrants has soared to a crisis level. According to U.S. Border Patrol figures, just since Oct. 1, agents have apprehended over 5,000 undocumented immigrant children along the Mexican border. Texas Governor Greg Abbott is not standing by idly waiting for the White House to respond as his office and resources continue to coordinate efforts through the weekend.
Data revealed this weekend shows that the Rio Grande Valley sector in Texas has processed over 3,000 of these children, as compared to 1,547 during the same time during the 2014 immigration crisis. The 5,000-plus total overshadows the 2,519 children crossing this border during those time frame dates in 2014.
Beyond the official statements of the government, Border Agents are telling the Examiner that “this intrusion is overwhelming. Our agents are trained for security and law enforcement matters, yet we find ourselves having to care for children without their parents.”
“This is in addition to the crushing demands of processing, the so called vetting, required for the flood of adults coming in,” one agent said Friday. “How are we to immediately know where they are coming from, if they are terrorists even, when we have a continuous flow coming in? It is crisis.”
Officially, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection stated, “We are closely monitoring current trends and coordinating across the whole of government to ensure an effective response to any changes in migration flows. We are diligently working to secure our borders, address underlying causes and deter future increases in unauthorized migration while ensuring that those with legitimate humanitarian claims are afforded the opportunity to seek protection.”
The crisis is so great that shelters are rapidly nearing a capacity level, with urgent requests for more beds and new shelters rolling in. In 2014, federal officials indicated shelters had to be prepared for about 90,000 children, when over 250,000 immigrants were apprehended along the border. Out of that quarter of a million people, 68,541 were under the age of 18 who arrived without parents or guardians. Almost 50,000 of those children entered in the Valley area.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott blamed “the neglect shown by the federal government” on the escalating tide of “criminal enterprises,” including human trafficking, drug smuggling, violent gang activity and other problems in the United States, in a scorching letter to the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) in September. In response to these startling reports from the U.S. Border Patrol, Abbott sent the urgent letter DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson requesting action. The Texas Governor, sharing the frustration of millions of Americans and legal immigrants, wants immediate responses from the Obama Administration.
“Texas will continue to be assertive in securing our border,” Abbott wrote. “But given recent reports that our southern border has become more porous—not less, it is clearer than ever that the federal government must act to reverse the tide of this mounting crisis.”
Noting that Texas resources are substantially strained from the federal government blunders and policies the state must deal with, including health, education and welfare costs, Abbott spelled out the immediate need from the DHS:
- 250 additional Border Patrol agents to be assigned to Texas;
- Five additional aerostats to vastly improve law enforcement’s strategic information about and response to often-violent cross-border smuggling activity;
- A listing of the conditions under which individuals will be released to relatives or to private organizations in Texas communities, to include screening procedures, and into what agencies’ or entities’ custody the individuals will be released and under what premise will they be kept;
- Continued Federal diligence and partnership with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the Department of Justice, and the State of Texas in maintaining the detention capabilities of the two detention centers in Texas.
Abbott reminded Johnson that “the problem is compounded by the drug cartels and transnational gang enterprises that are involved in this illegal cross border activity.”
“The illegal border crossings often serve as camouflage for hostile transnational criminal organizations that bring drugs, human trafficking, home invasions, kidnapping and other heinous acts to Texas,” Abbott continued and indicating these “gangs profit mightily from a porous border.”
“Whether they are smuggling people or products illegally across our border or selling would-be immigrants into sex slavery, the cartels get rich,” Abbott remarked. “I ask for your immediate and bold action to prevent this from escalating into an uncontrollable crisis.”
“Please know that Texas is doing more than its share to deal with these challenges,” the Governor wrote. “This spring, I signed into law the largest border security plan ever enacted by a state. Texas is dedicating more than $800 million to help secure the border. The bulk is devoted to “Operation Secure Texas,” which launched on September 1, 20L5.”
Operation Secure Texas includes:
- 250 additional Texas Department of Public Safety troopers permanently stationed in the border region
- A Texas Ranger Company
- A high-altitude aircraft with aerial observation capabilities
- Tactical marine and ground vehicles
- The installation of 4,000 new real-time surveillance cameras and other detection technology
- A training facility and a Border Prosecution Unit “to bring to justice the many sources of cross border corruption and other criminal activity.”
“Texas is stepping up to do its part, but the primary responsibility for securing our sovereign border lies with the federal government,” Abbott offered. “And despite brave and determined efforts by courageous men and women in state, local and federal law enforcement (including U.S. Border Patrol), it is apparent that the current allocation of federal resources is not sufficient to interdict, disrupt or deter the criminal enterprises infiltrating our southern border.”