The vast majority of illegal immigrants the Border Patrol apprehends are released into the U.S., the head of the agents’ union testified before a Senate panel Thursday.
“We’re releasing basically everybody as long as you’re not from the country of Mexico. And even if you’re from the country of Mexico and you claim that you have a credible fear and you’re asking for asylum for one reason or another — we’re still releasing those individuals,” Brandon Judd, the president of the National Border Patrol Council, said before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest.
He added, “If I were to guess, I would say that at least 80 percent of the individuals that the United States Border Patrol arrests at the border qualify for this catch and release program and in essence we are just letting them come into the United States.”
Earlier in the hearing Judd described the administration’s policy of releasing illegal immigrants apprehended at the border into the U.S., in some cases with a notice to appear and in other cases — if they claim to have been in the U.S. since before 2014 — without additional paperwork.
“If you are an unaccompanied minor we will not only release you, but will escort you to your final destination. If you are a family unit, we will release you. If you claim credible fear, we will release you. If you are a single male and we do not physically see you cross the border and you claim that you have been in this country since 2014, we will release you,” he detailed.