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Around the Agency

Mark A. Morgan sworn in as Chief of the U.S. Border Patrol

 

Mark A. Morgan sworn inBefore nearly 100 U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel, Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske swore in Mark A. Morgan as the Chief of the U.S. Border Patrol. Chief Morgan brings more than 30 years of law enforcement and military experience to the job. Photo by Glenn Fawcett

Mark A. Morgan sworn in

Newly appointed U.S. Border Patrol Chief Mark A. Morgan assumes command of the U.S. Border Patrol during a swearing-in ceremony at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C. Photo by Edgar Ramos

 

Before nearly 100 U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel, Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske swore in Mark A. Morgan as the Chief of the U.S. Border Patrol last week. Chief Morgan brings more than 30 years of law enforcement and military experience to the job.

After his service in the United States Marine Corps, Chief Morgan joined the Los Angeles Police Department as a police officer and served as a deputy sheriff in Platte County, Missouri.

In 1996, Chief Morgan joined the FBI as a special agent, launching a 20-year career that included high profile positions in the U.S. and around the world.

Chief Morgan served as the FBI’s deputy assistant director of the inspection division, assistant director of the training division and deputy on-scene commander in Baghdad, Iraq.

In 2014, Chief Morgan was appointed as CBP’s acting assistant commissioner for internal affairs. Following his service with CBP, Chief Morgan was appointed assistant director in charge of the FBI’s academy in Quantico, Virginia, before taking the helm of the U.S. Border Patrol in July.

In an enthusiastic and passionate portrayal of the men and women who patrol the border, Chief Morgan said it was during his assignment at CBP that he more fully grasped how critical Border Patrol agents are to national security. "As impressed as I was with the Border Patrol’s mission, I was more impressed with the men and women behind the mission," commending them for their dedication as well as commitment to the country and the organization. "They earned my respect, gratitude and admiration," said Chief Morgan.

During the ceremony, Commissioner Kerlikowske described Chief Morgan as a remarkable public servant "marked by the kinds of accomplishments that make him more than qualified to assume the post of Chief of the United States Border Patrol."

He called Chief Morgan a hands-on leader who believes in engaging with agents and mission support personnel, noting his background as both a warrior and lawyer is "really an unbeatable combination."


 

CBP inaugurates new aircraft facilities in Puerto Rico

 

Inauguration

CBP Air and Marine Operations recently unveiled its new aircraft hangar and support facilities at the Rafael Hernandez International Airport in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. CBP Photo

Inauguration

Participating in the ribbon cutting ceremony were, from left: Johnny Morales, director of Air Operations in the Caribbean; Randolph Alles, executive assistant commissioner of Air and Marine Operations; Carlos Mendez, mayor of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico and R. Gil Kerlikowske, CBP Commissioner. CBP photo

CBP Air and Marine Operations recently unveiled its new aircraft hangar and support facilities at the Rafael Hernandez International Airport in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.

The new 30,000-square-foot facility is part of the Caribbean Air and Marine Branch, the only federal law enforcement organization in the Caribbean Basin with integrated air and marine interdiction capabilities.

"CBP responds to an evolving array of threats and challenges in the border environment," said CBP Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske. "It is the vigilance and dedication of our frontline workforce that ensures our ability to execute our critical border security responsibilities.

"Our success in reducing illicit activity in the Caribbean is possible through collaborative operations and partnerships with other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies," Commissioner Kerlikowske said. "This new facility provides additional support to our ongoing mission."

The Caribbean branch is charged with detection and interdiction of airborne and maritime smuggling throughout the archipelago of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as the West Indies, using radar facilities to detect and intercept air smuggling attempts and airborne radar tracking aircraft to detect maritime smugglers.

"These new facilities enhance AMO’s operational capacity to serve the areas of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands," said Randolph D. "Tex" Alles, executive assistant commissioner for AMO. "[They] are at the forefront of the transnational threat, consisting primarily of illegal alien and narcotics smuggling via marine vessels."

Mayor Carlos Mendez of Aguadilla was among the honored guests to cut the ribbon for the $10 million facility.

The building hangar has offices for air interdiction agents and a training room and other amenities.

"CBP is proud of the countless ways that AMO contributes to the safety and security of the Caribbean region," said Commissioner Kerlikowske.


 

Mobile Passport Control app expands to Washington Dulles International Airport

Eligible travelers entering the U.S. have a mobile option for customs declaration

 

Mobile Passport

U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority announced the expansion of Mobile Passport Control, or MPC, to Washington Dulles International Airport. Dulles International becomes the 14th airport to offer MPC admissions processing.

MPC is the first authorized app to expedite a traveler’s arrival into the United States. Eligible travelers submit their passport information and customs declaration form to CBP via a smartphone or tablet app prior to arrival. Android and iPhone users can download the Mobile Passport app for free from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.

"This is an exciting time for Customs and Border Protection and Washington Dulles International Airport. We have worked closely with Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority to offer the Mobile Passport Control app to travelers arriving at our airport from abroad," said Wayne Biondi, CBP port director for the Area Port of Washington Dulles. "CBP remains committed to using technological advances and resources to make international arrivals as traveler-friendly as possible."

"At Dulles International, we never stop looking for ways to make the journey easier and more enjoyable for our travelers," said Chris Browne, vice president and airport manager. "Together with our partners at Customs and Border Protection, we are proud to introduce the Mobile Passport app as the latest innovation to make international arrivals an even smoother process."

MPC currently offers U.S. citizens and Canadian visitors a more secure and efficient in-person inspection between the CBP officer and the traveler upon arrival in the United States. Much like Automated Passport Control, the app does not require pre-approval, is free to use and does not collect any new information from travelers.

Travelers opting to use the app will no longer have to complete a paper Customs Declaration form. As a result, travelers will experience shorter wait times, less congestion and faster processing.

The MPC pilot launched in August 2014 for eligible travelers arriving at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, and has since expanded to 14 airports.

In addition to Atlanta and Dulles, MPC is available to passengers at Chicago O’Hare International Airport; Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport; Denver International Airport; Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport; John F. Kennedy Airport; Miami International Airport;

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport; Newark International Airport; Orlando International Airport; San Francisco International Airport; San Jose International Airport; and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

MPC is expected to expand to more airports in 2016 and CBP has committed to expand the program to the 20 airports with the highest volumes of international travelers by the end of the calendar year.

This first-of-its-kind app was developed in partnership with CBP by Airports Council International- North America and its technical partners. Information about Mobile Passport Control, including how to download user eligibility and other frequently asked questions, is available on CBP.gov.

Mobile Passport

There are five easy steps to Mobile Passport Control:

• Download the Mobile Passport Control app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store prior to arriving

• Create a profile with your passport information

• Complete the "New Trip" section upon arrival in the United States

• Submit your CBP declaration form through the app to receive an electronic receipt with an Encrypted Quick Response code

• Bring your passport and smartphone or tablet with your digital bar-coded receipt to a CBP officer