Border Patrol agents in the nation’s two busiest sectors continue to be overwhelmed by large migrant groups crossing from Mexico into South Texas. Human smugglers utilize the tactic of moving large groups of migrants across the border to tie up Border Patrol resources.
In the Rio Grande Valley Sector, agents encountered three large groups over the Independence Day weekend. The groups totaled 403 migrants, including 195 family units, 52 unaccompanied minors, and 156 single adults, according to information obtained from Border Patrol officials.
Officials identified the migrants in these three groups as citizens of Cuba and countries from Central and South America.
In the five days leading up to the holiday weekend, RGV agents encountered eight more large groups totaling nearly 1,200 migrants. The groups crossed the Rio Grande from Mexico into Hidalgo and Starr counties.
Agents identified the migrants as citizens of Cuba along with migrants from Asia and other Central and South American countries. They included 638 family units, 340 unaccompanied minors, and 193 single adults, officials stated.
Further upstream in what is now the nation’s busiest sector, Del Rio Sector agents encountered three more large groups during a six-hour period on June 30. The three crossings all occurred in the Eagle Pass area of operations.
The groups totaled 675 migrants, including citizens of Bolivia, Chile, Cuba, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Iran, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, and Venezuela.
“A large group is a group consisting of 100 subjects or more,” Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Jason D. Owens said in a written statement. “Currently, the Del Rio Sector is responsible for over 50 percent of all large group apprehension in the nation. With less infrastructure and personnel than larger Border Patrol sectors, this puts a tremendous strain on our communities and keeps our agents from doing what they signed up to do – patrolling our border and keeping this country safe.”