MS-13 Gang Member Apprehensions this Year up 244 Percent, Says Border Patrol Sector Chief

20170505_HPR_Guandique-12_0 - ICE - MS-13
File/U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

During a recent interview with Breitbart Texas Editor-in-Chief Brandon Darby, Rio Grande Valley (RGV) Sector Chief Manuel Padilla, Jr. reported an increase in the arrest of MS-13 gang members well in excess of 200 percent. The chief explained this is a national security risk because these criminal gang members do not stay in South Texas, but rather, travel all across the U.S.

“What we have here in the valley,” Chief Padilla explained to Darby, “we have a unique dynamic where the traffic that is coming here, it’s actually not staying here. I can tell you we are well over a 200 percent increase [in the apprehension of] MS-13 gang members.”

“The good news for the valley is that they do not remain here,” he continued. “The bad news for the United States is that they go to Houston and Maryland, and other parts of the country to commit their atrocious criminal acts.”

Padilla told Darby that the MS-13 traffic is not very visible except to the Border Patrol agents who work the line and to our partners that encounter it on a regular basis.

Chaotic Traffic in the Rio Grande Valley Chart: U.S. Border Patrol/Rio Grande Valley Sector

Chaotic Traffic in the Rio Grande Valley Chart: U.S. Border Patrol/Rio Grande Valley Sector

The sector chief unveiled a chart he calls the “Chaotic Traffic in the Rio Grande Valley” chart that details the increased in the arrests of gang members in his sector.


RGV Sector agents arrested 64 MS-13 gang members and 30 18th Street gang members in Fiscal Year 2017, Padilla reported. With two months to go in Fiscal Year 2018 reporting, those numbers jumped to 220 and 83 respectively. This represents an increase of 244 percent in the arrests of MS-13 gang members who illegally crossed the border in this sector and a 177 percent increase for 18th Street gang members.

“This type of traffic is always at a higher level when you have a border that needs personnel, technology, and infrastructure,” Chief Padilla stated.”

RGV Sector agents arrested a MS-13 an MS-13 gang member in late July at the Falfurrias Border Patrol Checkpoint. Human smugglers stashed the gang member in the trailer of an 18-wheeler along with 24 other illegal aliens — including one unaccompanied minor, Breitbart Texas reported.

Agents arrested three other MS-13 gang members a week earlier in separate incidents along the Rio Grande River. RGV Sector agents arrested two more MS-13 gang members in South Texas. One, a Salvadoran national who served prison time in his home country for his involvement in a double homicide, was arrested at the Falfurrias Checkpoint, 80 miles from the Mexican border with Texas. The other was arrested near the border town of Los Ebanos.

Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas. He is a founding member of the Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX and Facebook.




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