by WorldTribune Staff, March 18, 2019
Through its Catch and Release policy, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has since December released 84,500 immigrants who crossed through the U.S.-Mexico border, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) data show.
Catch and Release is in “overdrive,” according to the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council, the ICE union.
At the current rate, DHS is releasing more than 42,000 border crossers and illegal immigrants into the country about every month. If that rate continues, by the end of 2019 DHS will have released more than half a million border crossers and illegal immigrants into the U.S.
In a letter to President Donald Trump last week, the ICE union wrote: “As you know, every day thousands of illegal aliens are being released into the United States by your Administration. ‘Catch and Release’ is not just happening, it’s in overdrive. Catch and release must continue as ICE doesn’t have sufficient custody space to hold the massive number of family units illegally entering the United States every day. DHS resources on the border are overwhelmed. Political games in Washington, D.C. have rendered the United States completely incapable of controlling its southern border.”
The letter continued: “Under the current circumstances, CBP Officers and Border Patrol Agents must apprehend hundreds to thousands of immigration violators each day, and process the cases of those they apprehend, to include issuing notices requiring an appearance before an immigration judge. Again, as there is no custody space, the hundreds to thousands apprehended each day by CBP must be released to charitable organizations that facilitate their travel to locations throughout the U.S. In a nutshell, this is ‘Catch and Release.’ And this is where the utter nonsense begins.”
Under the Catch and Release policy, immigration officials use buses to take immigrants to nearby border cities and drop them off with the promise that they will show up for their immigration and asylum hearings, sometimes years later. Most never show up.
Of the 84,500 released since December, 37,500 were dropped off in San Antonio, 24,000 in El Paso, Texas, 14,500 in Phoenix, and 8,500 in San Diego.
The overwhelming majority are never deported.
Princeton Policy Advisors researcher Steven Kopits projects that in 2019 there will be an additional 260,000 to 500,000 illegal immigrants who successfully cross the southern border into the U.S. undetected by Border Patrol agents.