By Bethany Blankley (The Center Square)
Border Patrol Chief John Modlin testified Tuesday before the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability that what is not happening in Arizona’s Tucson sector, what has been shown on national television about large family groups with young children seeking asylum at the southern border.
“The most significant factor that separates Tucson from the rest of the Southwest frontier is its immigrant population. It’s not what you see on the news,” he said.
“Most encounters in Tucson are single adult men trying to avoid detection. The smuggling organizations in our south are very organized and resourceful,” Modlin said, referring to the Mexican cartels. “Every person who passes through the Tucson sector must pay these criminal organizations. Various tactics are used to smuggle thousands of migrants across the border.”
He reiterated that most are single men of military age wearing camouflage to avoid detection by law enforcement.
“The migrants we encounter are fully disguised by the smuggling organizations before they cross,” he said. “Most flee and fight our agents to avoid apprehension. Many are formerly deported felons who know they are inadmissible to the United States and many pose a serious threat to our communities.”
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He explained the tactics Mexican cartels use to pull Border Patrol agents from the line of border security protection, called “task saturation.”
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Task saturation, he explained, “is a term we use to describe a technique where smuggling organizations break up large groups of migrants into many smaller groups. These smaller groups are then directed to cross the border illegally at various points, effectively saturating the area with migrants. and exhausts our response capabilities. This strategy, combined with the remoteness of the area, has a compounding effect and leaves large areas of the border unguarded while our agents are responding, rescuing and detaining migrants.”
Modlin talks about how the cartels pay them to smuggle them through smart phones. The phone has map routes and uses GPS to input updates to them as they make their way north inside the United States. They use social media apps to trick American teenagers into driving across the border and loading illegal aliens into their parents’ vehicles for what they believe is “a quick and unnecessary payoff.”
“However, they are wrong,” he said. “The Tucson Sector handles more smuggling cases than any other sector on the Southwest Border.”
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In 2020, total encounters with illegal aliens were 66,000, he said. “This number almost tripled in 2021 and then quadrupled last year. We closed last year with 250,000 encounters; 216,000 were single adults. That’s a 257% increase in just two years.” Now, agents are growing another 20% over the past year, he testified.
The sector covers the area from the Yuma County line to the Arizona-New Mexico state line. In fiscal year 2022, Border Patrol agents in the sector apprehended 264,727 illegal aliens and reported 193,658 getaways, according to Border Patrol data obtained by The Center Square. The number apprehended and eluding law enforcement dwarfs the population of cities where Border Patrol stations are located other than Tucson – 7,052 for a population of 7,052 in Wyses, 8 in Casa Grandes, 24 in Nogales, 178 in Wilcox, 584 in Sonoitas, 106, and 106 in Byces, 206. Enough 95 three points.
Syndicated with permission from Center Square.