A U.S. Border Patrol official said his agency has apprehended more than 30,000 illegal immigrants on the southern border in the past 10 days.
“This is a challenge unlike any we’ve ever faced before,” Chief of Law Enforcement Operations Brian Hastings said Monday on “Fox & Friends.”
“We’re up to 474,000 arrests so far this fiscal year, and just the last 10 days alone, 33,000 arrests for us,” he added. “So, our facilities were not designed to handle this type of flow or more importantly, this demographic — about 63 percent being family units and UACs, or unaccompanied alien children.”
Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost called the number of arrests “unsustainable” and “beyond capacity,” in a tweet Saturday.
U.S. officials announced in March they had released 84,500 migrant family members since Dec. 21, The Arizona Republic reported. The government released 14,500 migrants into the Phoenix area, while 37,500 were set free into south Texas. Immigration officials also sent 24,000 illegal immigrants to El Paso, Texas, and 8,500 to San Diego.
“As I’ve said before, we’re being overwhelmed right now,” Hastings said.
He also criticized current immigration law and said there must be a consequence for entering the U.S. illegally.
“Our facilities just simply weren’t designed to handle this type of flow or this demographic,” Hastings continued. “And so with that, we have had to look at for the safety of our agents and for those that we detained, releasing process non-criminal family units, which we don’t want to do. We want to apply a consequence, but with the outdated laws we simply cannot apply a consequence with what we have right now.”
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