Enforcement Actions At U.S.-Mexico Border Down For 7th Straight Month

Fentanyl seizures are up over 80 percent

Customs and Border Protection agents and officers inspect vehicles at port of entry. (Photo by Josh Denmark/U.S. Customs and Border Protection Work Calexico)

WASHINGTON — U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents apprehended or denied entry to fewer people at the U.S.-Mexico border in December than in the previous month. The December enforcement actions on the Southwest Border decreased by 5 percent as compared to November.

The downward trend represents a 72 percent decrease since the peak of the humanitarian and border security crisis in May.

According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), in December, agents conducted a total of 40,620 enforcement actions on the southern border, including 32,858 apprehensions and 7,762 inadmissibility decisions. CBP Southwest Border Enforcement Actions fiscal year to date are 33 percent lower than last fiscal year.

  • CBP saw a 15 percent decline in inadmissible aliens at ports of entry and a 2 percent decline in USBP apprehensions.
  • Enforcement actions involving family units totaled 12,064. Unaccompanied alien children totaled 3,311; and
  • Single adults were 24,788, down 4% from November.
  • “This seven month decline is a direct result of President Trump’s network of policy initiatives and our ability to effectively enforce the law, enhance our border security posture and properly care for those in custody,” said CBP Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan in a press release.

    There was a decrease in enforcement actions across all key demographics, including unaccompanied children. Single adults represented the smallest decrease.

    Over 93,000 pounds of drugs nationwide was intercepted by agents in December. This is a 5 percent increase over November. Compared to this point in the previous fiscal year, overall drug seizures are up 28 percent, while fentanyl seizures are up over 80 percent and heroin seizures are up 27 percent, according to CBP.

    “The cross-border smuggling of illegal drugs continues to threaten communities throughout our nation,” said CBP Deputy Commissioner Robert Perez in the press release. “The volume of drugs seized is a sober reminder that we are in the midst of a national security crisis on the Southwest Border.”

    U.S. Border Patrol Southwest Border Apprehensions FY 2020

    USBP Demographic OCT NOV DEC Total
    Southwest Border Unaccompanied Alien Child 2,843 3,310 3,250 9,403
    Family Units* 9,724 8,998 8,602 27,324
    Single Adult 22,838 21,203 21,006 65,047
    Southwest Border Total Apprehensions 35,405 33,511 32,858 101,774

    *Family Unit represents the number of individuals (either a child under 18 years old, parent, or legal guardian) apprehended with a family member by the U.S. Border Patrol.
    Office of Field Operations Southwest Border Inadmissibles FY 2020

    Field Operations Demographic OCT NOV DEC Total
    Southwest Border Unaccompanied Alien Child 385 380 457 1,222
    Family Units* 4,009 4,144 3,462 11,615
    Single Adults 5,284 4,563 3,782 13,629
    Accompanied Minor Child** 101 53 61 215
    Southwest Border Total Inadmissibles 9,779 9,140 7,762 26,681

    *Family Unit represents the number of individuals (either a child under 18 years old, parent, or legal guardian) deemed inadmissible with a family member by the Office of Field Operations.

    **Accompanied Minor Child represents a child accompanied by a parent or legal guardian and the parent or legal guardian is either a U.S. Citizen, Lawful Permanent Resident, or admissible alien, and the child is determined to be inadmissible.

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