FederalImmigration & BorderTexas Border Arrests Surpassed 104,000 in November, Ticking Back Up After Moderate Drop in October

The State of Texas has commenced border wall construction in Starr County as part of its response to illegal immigration.
December 22, 2021
In November, encounters with illegal aliens jumped to a combined total of 104,285 in the El Paso, Big Bend, Del Rio, Laredo, and Rio Grande Valley sectors, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) most recent statistics. It is more than double the number of apprehensions in November of last year.

Single adults composed 63 percent of that total, followed by family units, who accounted for 27 percent, and unaccompanied children, who accounted for 10 percent of the encounters.

In terms of the nationalities of those who were taken into custody, CBP reported that 28 percent were Mexican, 18 percent were Honduran, 15 percent were Guatemalan, nine percent were Salvadoran, and 30 percent were of some other nationality.

In October, apprehensions in Texas sectors dropped to 98,652 from a high of at least 147,107 in July.

In the southwestern United States overall, there were 173,620 encounters with illegal aliens, about a quarter of whom border police had already arrested at least once in the preceding year, according to CBP.

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Drug seizures also increased by 90 percent from October, which the agency partially attributed to the relaxing of travel rules that were instituted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Notably, there was a 164 percent increase in the seizure of methamphetamine.

CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus, whose nomination by President Biden was narrowly confirmed by the U.S. Senate earlier this month, commented on the enforcement numbers in a press release.

“CBP’s November Monthly Operational Update reflects an incredible amount of work on behalf of the American people to keep dangerous drugs and products out of our communities, to facilitate travel and billions of dollars in trade, and to maintain security along our borders,” Magnus stated.

The number of enforcement encounters does not include the number of illegal aliens who evaded custody, which could be as many as two or more for each apprehension. Border agents have been stretched thin this year as they tend to humanitarian issues and other problems arising from the border disaster.

Construction on a state border wall is currently in progress in Starr County after Governor Greg Abbott directed the Texas Facilities Commission in June to build a barrier between Texas and Mexico.

Abbott has pitched the project as a way for the state to respond to illegal immigration in lieu of the Biden administration, which canceled construction on the federal government’s wall shortly after the president took office.

Texas law enforcement officers and military personnel have also taken into custody thousands of criminals and tens of thousands of suspected illegal aliens since March as part of an effort known as Operation Lone Star, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

The Biden administration’s immigration policy, which is led by Vice President Kamala Harris, has been focused on “the root causes of migration.” In Fiscal Year 2021, CBP encountered more than 1.15 million illegal aliens in Texas border patrol sectors.

The White House has contended that President Trump’s policies were inhumane and out of line with American values.


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Hayden Sparks

Hayden Sparks is a senior reporter for The Texan and a lifelong resident of the Lone Star State. He has coached competitive speech and debate and has been involved in politics since a young age. One of Hayden's favorite quotes is by Sam Houston: "Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may."