U.S. Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week that border agents have already identified 3,500 cases of illegal alien “families” being apprehended after coming across the U.S. border, only to discover they weren’t actually families at all.
"Do you have instances where adults claim to be a parent or family member of a child and that ends up being false?”Judiciary Chairman John Cornyn asked.
“We are seeing that. Fiscal year to date, we have already identified 3,500 fraudulent families,” Provost affirmed.
The Trump administration's policy of separating some migrant families at the border - a policy also enforced under former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush - has come under fire by liberals for being "inhumane," even as the administration argues it's necessary to ensure children aren't being trafficked by adults falsely claiming to be their parents. Just this week, reports emerged that an illegal alien named Maynor Velasquez Molina admitted to paying a Guatemalan family $130 to “rent” their young son as his ticket into the U.S. The pair crossed the border in February with a group of about 100 other illegal aliens, where Molina told border agents he was the boy's father and presented them with a fraudulent birth certificate.
Four days later, immigration officials determined the document was a fake. A federal grand jury in Tucson, Arizona indicted Velasquez for human smuggling in March.
But the worrying rise of fraudulent families is just a sliver of the problems federal agents are currently facing at the border. Provost also testified before the Senate Judiciary that in general, “our apprehension numbers are off the charts."
"We cannot address this crisis by shifting more resources. It's like holding a bucket under a faucet. It doesn't matter how many buckets you give me if we can't turn off the flow," she said.
Provost’s testimony came the same week U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported they’d apprehended more than 109,000 illegal aliens crossing the U.S. border in April alone, over 5,400 more than were caught in March and marking the highest monthly total since 2007.
According to CBP,more than 10,000 illegal aliens were apprehended in the Rio Grande Valley Sector last week alone, including more than 2,400 caught on Saturday – and that’s just one section of the border.
On Saturday, agents from Brownsville to Roma apprehended over 2,400 illegal aliens, the majority of which consist of family units and unaccompanied children who readily turn themselves in to agents.
Over the past week, more than 10,000 illegal aliens were apprehended, making it one of the highest weekly total ever experienced in this sector. Currently, stations and processing centers are holding more than 7,000 illegal aliens in custody. At the current rate, the RGV Sector is expected to surpass the mass migration influx experienced in 2014.