Migrant Apprehensions at Border Hit 144K in May, Says CBP

This May 29, 2019 photo released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shows some of 1,036 migrants who crossed the U.S.-Mexico border in El Paso, Texas, the largest that the Border Patrol says it has ever encountered. Video shows them going under a chain-link fence to the U.S., where …
File Photo: U.S. Customs and Border Protection via AP

The apprehension of migrants along the southwest border with Mexico jumped to more than 144,000 in May. Between ports of entry, Border Patrol agents apprehended more than 132,000 migrants who illegally crossed the border illegally between ports of entry.

Chart: U.S. Customs and Border Protection - May Southwest Border Migration Report

Chart: U.S. Customs and Border Protection – May Southwest Border Migration Report

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Chief (CBP) Operating Officer John P. Sanders told reporters on a Wednesday afternoon conference call that Border Patrol agents and CBP officers apprehended 144,278 migrants in May. Over 100,000 of those taken into custody were unaccompanied minors and family units. This represents a 44 percent increase over the April’sapprehensions of families and minors, Sanders said.

U.S. Border Patrol Chief of Law Enforcement Operations Brian Hastings said that Border Patrol agents apprehended more than 132,000 migrants who illegally crossed the border between ports of entry. Of those, Hastings said more than 84,000 were family units, more than 11,000 were unaccompanied minors and more than 36,000 were single adults. He said agents apprehended an average of 4,286 per day in May.

“The numbers for May prove the crisis is only getting worse,” Hastings stated. “As of today, the Border Patrol has apprehended, as of this morning, more than 610,000 subjects on the southwest border alone. That’s exceeding the last decade of fiscal year totals… and there’s still four months remaining in this fiscal year.”

“If the current apprehension levels remain the same, we will surpass all physical year totals dating back to 2006,” he explained. “For the month of May, Border Patrol has apprehended over 132,000 subjects on the southwest border alone. That’s an average of 4,285 apprehensions per day.”

Hastings discussed how these numbers differ radically from those in the past due to the demographics of the migrants being taken into custody. “For May, over 36,000 Border Patrol apprehensions were single adults, over 11,000 apprehensions were unaccompanied alien children, a 29 percent increase over our already record numbers in April. Over 84,000 or nearly 64 percent of our apprehensions were family units.”

The May Southwest Border Migration Report, released on Wednesday afternoon by CBP officials, states that Border Patrol agents apprehended 132,887 total migrants in May. Of those, 84,542 were family unit, 11,507 were unaccompanied minors, and 36,838 were single adults.

The Rio Grande Valley Sector continues to be the busiest sector in terms of total migrant apprehensions for May. RGV Sector agents apprehended 49,855 migrants who illegally crossed the border into South Texas in May. Of those, nearly 50,000 were unaccompanied minors and family units.

The El Paso Sector follows closely with 36,830 total apprehensions consisting of 29,832 family units and 3,255 unaccompanied minors.

Hastings said that up to 60 percent of Border Patrol agents are being pulled from law enforcement duties to provide housing, food, and transportation of these migrants. Without help from Congress, Sanders said CBP would exhaust its budget well before the end of the fiscal year.

Border Patrol agents normally witness a drop-off in apprehensions during the summer months, Hastings said in response to a question from the Los Angeles Times. “With the dynamic change in the demographics that we have seen, we’re not seeing any signs of anything dropping off. For the first few days in June, we’re already seeing large groups continue to go up and we’ve had high entry days as well.

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

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