U.S. Border Patrol agents in Texas intercepted 116 African migrants who crossed the Rio Grande and entered the U.S. The group consisted of migrants from Angola, Cameroon and Congo.
The group primarily consisted of families with young children and many unaccompanied minors.
This was the first time a group of this size has been arrested at the Del Rio Sector, and also the first group of Africans to be detained.
Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz said, “Large groups present a unique challenge for the men and women of the Del Rio Sector. This large group from Africa further demonstrates the complexity and severity of the border security and humanitarian crisis at our Southwest border.”
Just two days later on June 1, Eagle Pass Station sector Border Patrol agents apprehended another 37 African immigrants.
“We are continuing to see a rise in apprehensions of immigrants from countries not normally encountered in our area,” said Ortiz in another CBP statement. “Groups of family units from around the world are traveling thousands of miles just enter the United States illegally to exploit our immigration laws.”
Border Patrol has apprehended 182 groups of more than 100 people each, all crossing the southern border in the fiscal year 2019, which is a 450 percent increase from the previous year.
On May 29, Border Patrol agents in El Paso seized the largest group of illegal immigrants in history, after 1,036 were detained trying to cross the border, AP News reported.
CBP Deputy Commissioner Robert E. Perez said, “The apprehension of 1,036 individuals in a single group – the largest group ever encountered by Border Patrol agents – demonstrates the severity of the border security and humanitarian crisis at our Southwest border. The dedicated men and women of CBP, and in particular the U.S Border Patrol, are doing their very best every day to address the influx of family units and unaccompanied children.”
Last night, U.S. Border Patrol agents apprehended more than 100 illegal aliens from Congo, Angola, and Cameroon near the U.S.–Mexico border.— The White House (@WhiteHouse) May 31, 2019
Our southern border is now a magnet for illegal immigration from all over the world. It's time for Democrats to help close the loopholes! pic.twitter.com/lxe7qqQiNj
The group detained on May 29 were from Guatemala, Honduras, or El Salvador and included 934 family members, 63 unaccompanied minors, and 39 single adults. They are all in custody of the U.S. Border Patrol and will remain there until processing is complete.
As the numbers of Central American families arriving at the southern border keeps increasing, Border Patrol is strained to catch up.