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Illegal border crossings jumped by 33 percent in July: CBP

Over 183,000 people were processed by border agents in July, a 33 percent increase from last month, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced Friday.

About 132,000 of those people were undocumented immigrants who entered the U.S. along the southern border and encountered Border Patrol agents, officials said. This includes those both those were apprehended and those that surrendered. 

Despite the recent increase, border crossings have fallen significantly since the Biden administration ended Title 42 — a pandemic-era policy that allowed border agents to quickly turn away migrants citing health risks — in May.

Crossings by single adults — typically men — have fallen by about 66 percent since last July, the agency said.

Last month saw lower crossing rates, with only about 100,000 people encountered by Border Patrol at the border. 

“We remain vigilant and continue to adjust our operational plans to maximize enforcement efforts against those individuals who do not use lawful pathways or processes, knowing that smugglers continue to use disinformation to prey on vulnerable individuals,” acting CBP commissioner Troy Miller said.

Migrant processing at legal ports of entry hit a record high of nearly 51,000 this month, mostly due to a phone app reservation process, the agency said. CBP One allows migrants to make appointments to meet with border officials, avoid long lines and be processed through immigration services quicker and more easily. About 45,000 people used the app in July, data shows.

The app system was deployed in January and has been slowly expanded over time. More than 188,000 people have made appointments with the system since its deployment, the agency said.

Nationwide drug seizures increased by 9 percent this month from June, CBP said. So far this fiscal year, the agency has seized almost 24,000 pounds of fentanyl, over double last year’s rate.

The southern border has been a hot political topic on the 2024 campaign trail, as Republicans attempt to blame President Biden for last year’s high crossing rates.

Biden rolled out a slew of new border policies this year, but they are now facing mounting legal challenges from both immigration advocates and hard-line anti-immigration officials in states like Texas.

Source: The Hill

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