Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) says illegal immigration totals suggest MS-13 Gang members are increasingly successfully crossing into the United States via the southern border as a result of President Joe Biden’s policies.
In a letter to the Department of Justice (DOJ), Grassley said that while illegal immigration has skyrocketed under Biden’s administration, the total number of known MS-13 Gang members apprehended trying to illegally cross into the U.S. has decreased significantly.
This, Grassley wrote, suggests more and more MS-13 Gang members are successfully crossing into the U.S. — sneaking past federal immigration officials in the process.
“Consequently, MS-13 may actually be an even bigger threat now than ever before, given CBP’s apparent failure or inability to accurately identify and apprehend MS-13 members amid the record-high numbers of people entering the US through the southern border right now,” Grassley wrote:
In the past four years, 2017-2020, Customs and Border Protection apprehended an average of 294 MS-13 gang-members a year. In those same years, 2017-2020, Customs and Border Protection found or arrested over 3 million illegal aliens, averaging about 750,000 people a year. This year however, with the increasingly open border between the US and Mexico, CBP has already encountered or arrested over 1.2 million illegal aliens, which represents a significant increase above previous years’ averages. [Emphasis added]
However, even though the total number of people illegally entering the United States has increased, CBP has only apprehended 71 MS-13 trying to enter the US this year, which represents a 75% decrease from previous years’ average. The obvious logical conclusion is that MS-13 members are successfully avoiding identification and sneaking past Border Patrol into the country, as agents focus their time and attention on dealing with unaccompanied children at the border or asylum seekers. In fact, one Border Patrol chief in Texas said exactly as much, stating that MS-13 members are using the high number of migrants entering the US to blend in and sneak past agents. [Emphasis added]
Yet, even if CBP is not catching all MS-13 members trying to sneak into the country, they are still catching some of them when they are able to successfully identify them. On April 13, 2021 Border Patrol agents arrested a female MS-13 member from El Salvador who was traveling with another undocumented alien who had previously been convicted of murder in Houston. Only a few weeks later, on April 27, 2021, agents also arrested an MS-13 member who was a convicted felon with an outstanding warrant near Yuma, Arizona. Additionally, here in the capital region, local police in Gaithersburg, Maryland arrested an MS-13 member after he lured a 15-year-old girl into an apartment and tried to rape her in May of this year. [Emphasis added]
Grassley asked DOJ officials to provide him with information on the Joint Task Force Vulcan (JTVF), created by the Trump administration to combat the MS-13 Gang.
“Does Joint Task Force Vulcan still exist,” Grassley wrote in questions. “If not, who made the decision to shutter JTFV? If JTFV does still exist, who is currently in charge of it? What was JTFV’s budget prior to President Biden’s inauguration? What is JTFV’s budget now (if JTFV still exists)?”
As Breitbart News recently exclusively reported, three illegal aliens were among nine MS-13 Gang members who were indicted late last month by federal prosecutors for multiple murders, kidnappings, and assaults in the Nashville, Tennessee, area.
One of the illegal aliens had been deported from the U.S. four times.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter here.