Group of 360 Central Americans Enters Near Ajo
TUCSON, Ariz. – U.S. Border Patrol agents from the Ajo Station encountered 360 migrants after they illegally entered the country and surrendered to agents west of Lukeville this morning.
Border Patrol camera operators spotted the mass of people after multiple buses arrived south of the U.S.-Mexico border approximately 14 miles west of the Port of Lukeville. Border Patrol agents watched as the group exited the buses and walked under the vehicle barrier that sits on the international boundary.
The group, consisting of 360 individuals, mostly family units from Central America, was similar to previous groups that have recently crossed in this remote area. Ajo Border Patrol agents quickly worked to determine if any members of the group needed medical attention, and then began to transport the group for processing.
National Park Service employees assisted agents at the site of the crossing, which sits on the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. Additional Border Patrol assets from around the Tucson Sector were diverted to provide humanitarian, transportation, and processing assistance for the large group.
CBP is facing an alarming trend in the rising volume of people illegally crossing our Southwest Border. The arriving flow is made up primarily of Central American families and unaccompanied children. This stark and increasing shift to more vulnerable populations, combined with the overwhelming numbers, and inadequate capacity to detain families and children has created a humanitarian and border security crisis. The increase in apprehensions is taxing the entire immigration system, especially the capabilities of ICE and CBP, creating an untenable situation for both CBP personnel and migrants.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.