Federal officials reported Monday that Border Patrol agents caught 170,186 migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally in December, a 139% increase from December 2020, which saw agents apprehend 71,141 migrants.
One-fourth of the December apprehensions took place in the Rio Grande Valley Sector, with 43,844, an increase of 155% over the prior year. The Del Rio Sector saw 33,205 apprehensions, in contrast to 9,196 the previous year, a 261% increase.
The Yuma Sector saw its largest rate of growth, with 29,469 migrants apprehended in December, up from 1,203 the previous year, which translates into an increase of over 2,349 percent.
Single adults accounted for 109,131 of the migrants, while families made up 43,312 of the apprehensions. Unaccompanied children made up 11,743 of the apprehensions.
Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Chris Magnus issued a statement that didn't mention illegal immigration, focusing instead on the agency’s other missions.
''The dedicated men and women at CBP are committed to ensuring dangerous drugs and counterfeit products are off the streets, our communities are kept safe, and our borders are secured. Equally important to our mission is facilitating lawful trade and travel that is critical to the sustained growth of the U.S. economy.
''In December, CBP collected more than $9 billion in estimated duties, and also saw a dramatic increase in the confiscation of fake products. In one port of entry alone, CBP officers reported the seizure of more than $30 million of counterfeit goods last month. Other key metrics show an uptick as well.
''There was a staggering $3.31 billion worth of counterfeit goods seized in FY21 — a 153 percent increase from FY20; heroin seizures increased by 113 percent in December. These seizures demonstrate that our intelligence and operational abilities are disrupting criminal enterprises and safeguarding legitimate commerce.
''We will continue to strengthen these capabilities and meet these challenges and future ones with the same determination and resolve,'' the statement read.
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