As concerns about the migrant crisis continue to loom large for affected communities, the statistics released by United States Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) reveal that the explosion in border crossings also poses a public safety threat.
According to CBP data, US federal agents arrested 38 suspected terrorists -named on the terror watchlist in October-December – at the southern border in the final three months of 2022.
In the government’s latest fiscal year which ended on September 30, for comparison, 98 suspected terrorists of the Terrorist Screening Dataset were apprehended by federal immigration officials between ports of entry in the country.
Last year, the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency also deported 55 suspected terrorists.
Just how big the spike in apprehensions is in the last couple of years shows the fact that in the fiscal year 2021, the number of such encounters between law enforcement officials and individuals on the Terrorist Screening Dataset was only 16 whereas, in the previous four years, that number was at three, three, six and two, respectively.
According to the Republicans, Biden’s open-border policies are the main reason for creating the crisis by sending the message of “come one, come all” to terrorists, criminals, and drug traffickers and cartels, as Tennessee Republican Senator Bill Hagerty pointed out.
Since January 2021 when President Joe Biden took office, about 150 people in the US terrorist screening database have been apprehended at the border compared to only 14 such arrests during Trump’s four years in office.
That means that Border Patrol apprehended more people in one month now – 17 were caught last month alone – than in the four years of Donald Trump’s presidency.
According to CBP, an estimated 600,000 “got-aways” entered the US last year without being apprehended but the agency didn’t offer an estimate for how many terrorists evaded arrest as they crossed the southern border.
At an all-time high, the federal agents at the southern border encountered nearly 252,000 illegal aliens in December while since Biden’s in office, more than 4.5 million migrants have been apprehended at the US-Mexico border.