Sunday, September 16, 2018

Arrests of Families Crossing Border Highest in Five Years

Photo: David J. Phillip/Associated Press
Trump administration blames increase on ‘vulnerabilities’ in U.S. immigration law
More than 90,000 immigrants traveling as part of a family have been arrested crossing the U.S. border illegally in the last 11 months, the highest such number in at least five years, according to data released by the Trump administration Wednesday.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan said 12,274 people traveling as part of a family, mostly from Central America, were arrested at the border in August. Last month’s arrests marked a 38% increase over July, when just over 9,000 were apprehended.
Total family apprehensions since October, the beginning of the federal fiscal year, is already higher than for any complete prior fiscal year for which data is available.
The total number of people arrested at the border in August rose about 20% from the prior month, to more than 37,500.
Mr. McAleenan said Wednesday that the rise in arrests of families was a “very direct response to the vulnerabilities” in U.S. immigration law and that the government has little ability to deter immigrant families and children traveling alone from crossing the border illegally.
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