Yuma Sector Border Patrol agents apprehended more than 900 mostly Central American migrants over the weekend. The migrants continue to cross in large groups over outdated border barrier sections.
On Saturday and Sunday, agents assigned to the Yuma Sector encountered multiple large groups who illegally crossed the border. Video captures the crossing of one of these migrant groups.
More than 900 illegal aliens surrendered to #YumaSector Border Patrol agents on Saturday and Sunday. A majority of them were Central American family units and unaccompanied alien children looking to be released into the United States. #SouthwestBorder pic.twitter.com/heYiE7GgY0
— CBP Arizona (@CBPArizona) May 20, 2019
Border Patrol officials said the family units and unaccompanied children are “looking to be released into the United States.”
Yuma Sector officials reported a 293 percent increase in the number of family units crossing the border in this remote region. Additionally, the sector witnessed a 60 percent increase in unaccompanied minors and a 52 percent increase in single adults, according to the April Southwest Border Migration Report.
In April alone, Yuma Sector agents apprehended more than 9,000 illegal immigrants. Of those, 7,021 were family units and another 941 were unaccompanied minors. Only about 1,200 single adults crossed in this sector in April.
Transnational criminal organizations continue to utilize the large group migrant strategy to tie up and divert Border Patrol resources.
“The resources that we’re pulling away from national security have a negative effect on law enforcement mission,” U.S. Border Patrol Chief Law Enforcement Operations Director Brian Hastings told reporters on a conference call in April. “Currently each day we’re pulling approximately 40% of our agents on the Southwest border, and diverting them specifically for the humanitarian need, that is to care for, transport and process family units and UACs.”
“Not only does this divert our resources, but as we’ve seen recently, smuggling organizations are utilizing these large groups as a diversion to enable the movement of smuggling of narcotics,” Hastings stated. “Approximately 60 large groups so far this year have been encountered in remote locations which causes us particular concern because they’re generally the furthest away from our processing centers, medical services, contract transportation, and even our stations.”