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Tag: CBP

Border Apprehensions Sharply Decline in June After Large Spike

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The number of migrants detained after crossing the Southwest border dropped in June for the first time this year.

Homeland Security announced a 28% decline in apprehensions from the previous month, with about 104,000 migrants detained in June.

While the flow of migrants typically slows down in the hotter summer months, the decline was steeper than expected. The number of apprehensions so far this year is 140% higher than the same time period last year.

“We are still in an ongoing border security and humanitarian crisis,” the department said in a statement. “We are past the breaking point and in a full-blown emergency. This situation should not be acceptable to any of us.”

The influx of migrants has caused crowded, unsanitary conditions at detention centers.

Homeland Security: CBP Agents Disciplined for Offensive Facebook Posts

Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan on ABC’s “This Week.”

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection agents who posted offensive and sexually demeaning content on Facebook have been disciplined, acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan told ABC’s “This Week.”

McAleenan said some agents were placed on “administrative duties” and others were warned to stop the conduct in letters. He did not specify how many agents were involved.

“The agents will be held accountable if they are CBP employees who did inappropriate things. I don’t think it’s reflective of the men and women we have,” McAleenan said.

The Facebook page, called “I’m 10-15,” was first reported by ProPublica on Monday. The page is used by current and former agents.

The Facebook group included offensive content and demeaning posts that targeted undocumented immigrants and U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
 One of the posts was an illustration of President Trump pushing the congresswoman’s head toward his crotch. In another post, a member encouraged agents to toss a “burrito at these bitches,” referring to members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus who were visiting detention centers.

Commenters also questioned the authenticity of a now-viral photo of a drowned man and his younger daughter.

When ProPublica approached CBP about the Facebook group, Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost denied knowing about it and pledged to launch an investigation.

But Politico reported that CBP officials knew about a secret, sexist and demeaning Facebook group for at least three years. In 2016, Border Patrol agents reported offensive photos that included simulated sex acts and other offensive material, a current Homeland Security official told Politico.

McAleenan on Sunday said he “was not aware of this group” at the time. Since then, he claimed, one agent was disciplined.

Politico received screenshots of Facebook posts that were reported to CBP. One agent appeared in two photos, one of which showed him simulating sex with a training mannequin. The other showed the agent smiling and posing with what appeared to be a human skull. In a third photo, an agent appeared to be defecting in the Arizona desert.

The reported photos resulted in a now-closed investigation by the Office of Professional Responsibility.

Email: Border Agents Forced Migrant to Walk with ‘I like men’ Sign

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection agents are accused of trying to humiliate a migrant by forcing him to walk around wearing a sign that read, “I like men,” in Spanish, according to emails obtained by CNN.

The March 5 incident is one of several episodes revealed in emails by an agent who accused colleagues of repeated incidents of inappropriate behavior.

“I am forwarding to the Office of Professional Responsibility, the office charged with looking into these allegations,” a CBP official told CNN.

The Honduran man was visibly upset as he was paraded around other detainees at an El Paso processing center, according to the email.

The agent who blew the whistle to a supervisor said CBP took no action.

The report is just the latest discovery of offensive behavior by border agents, and a lack of discipline by supervisors.

CBP Aware of Secret, Offensive Facebook Group for Years

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection officials knew about a secret, sexist and demeaning Facebook group for at least three years but declined to say whether anyone was disciplined.

In 2016, Border Patrol agents reported offensive photos that included simulated sex acts and other offensive material, a current Homeland Security official told Politico. A former DHS officials also said he knew about the Facebook group during the past year.

Neither official was aware of any serious actions taken against members of the group, called “I’m 10-15,” which was first reported by ProPublica on Monday.

The Facebook group included offensive content and demeaning posts that targeted undocumented immigrants and U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
One of the posts was an illustration of President Trump pushing the congresswoman’s head toward his crotch. In another post, a member encouraged agents to toss a “burrito at these bitches,” referring to members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus who were visiting detention centers.

In one post, commenters questioned the authenticity of a now-viral photo of a drowned man and his younger daughter.

When ProPublica approached CBP about the Facebook group, Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost denied knowing about it and pledged to launch an investigation.

Politico received screenshots of Facebook posts that were reported to CBP. One agent appeared in two photos, one of which showed him simulating sex with a training mannequin. The other showed the agent smiling and posing with what appeared to be a human skull.

In a third photo, an agent appeared to be defecting in the Arizona desert.

The reported photos resulted in a now-closed investigation by the Office of Professional Responsibility. But a CBP spokesperson declined to say whether any disciplinary action was taken.

Mark Morgan Promoted to Replace Sanders as CBP Head

Mark Morgan will head CBP.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Acting ICE Director Mark Morgan will replace John Sanders as head of Customs and Border Protection.

Sanders resigned from ICE earlier this week following growing criticism of the deplorable conditions reported at border facilities.

Morgan had previously served as chief of Border Patrol before taking over as head of ICE in May.

“I am confident he will bring the same commitment to the agency as it continues to navigate the current humanitarian and operational crisis,” Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan said in a statement.

ICE will promote Matthew Albence , deputy director of the agency’s deportation operations, to replace Morgan.

“Assuming the role of Acting Director of ICE is Matthew T. Albence, who has been performing the duties of the agency’s Deputy Director since August 2018. Mr. Albence brings years of experience, as he’s held a number of key positions within the ICE domain,” McAleenan said in a statement.

Albence faced criticism last year when he told a congressional committee that family detention centers are “more like summer camp” than jail.

Since Albence and Morgan will appointed, rather than nominated, they will not have to be confirmed by the Senate.

Advocates Discover Premature Baby in a Crowded Border Patrol Facility

A detention center, via CBP.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Attorneys visiting a crowded Border Patrol facility in Texas made a startling discovery – a teenage girl in a wheelchair holding a tiny, prematurely born baby.

The lawyers said the baby, wrapped in a dirty towel and looking listless, was barely a month old, The Associated Press reports. The mother was in severe pain because of complications from an emergency cesarean section in Mexico.

“You look at this baby and there is no question that this baby should be in a tube with a heart monitor,” said Hope Frye, a volunteer with an immigrant advocacy group.

Since being in Border Patrol custody, the baby received no medical attention, the lawyers said.

The case sheds more light on the inhumane conditions that have been reported under the Trump administration by advocates and the Inspector General.

Since late last year, five children have died after being detained by the Border Patrol.

Cyberattack on CBP Exposes Facial Recognition Data on Thousands of Travelers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Federal law enforcement defends the use of facial-recognition technology as a new tool to track down criminals, but a recent cyberattack of a Customs and Border Patrol subcontractor raises serious issues about privacy.

CBP acknowledged this week that the breach exposed facial-recognition data on thousands of people crossing the southern border, along with their license plates.

The disclosure comes less than a month after U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee hearings on facial-recognition systems prompted congressional members to call for a moratorium on the quickly growing technology.

“We shouldn’t be using the technology until we can be sure people’s rights are being protected,” Neema Singh Guliani, senior legislative counsel for the Washington Legislative Office of the American Civil Liberties Union, said during a May 22 hearing. “By and large, people have been unaware of these systems and how they work.”

CBP said the subcontractor violated government regulations by uploading the images to its company network.

Border Patrol Agent Rescues Mother, Child from Swarm of Bees

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

So many bees covered a Guatemalan mother protecting her child that a Border Patrol agent believed he saw a bundle of clothing.

What the agent actually witnessed were thousands of bees covering a mother who had been curled over her 8-year-old son to protect him in Texas.

“Upon closer investigation, the agent realized the bundle was a person curled up in the fetal position,” CBP said in a statement to CNN.

The agent called for the woman to seek shelter in his patrol car. At that point, the agent realized “the person was covering a small child.”

The woman and her son ran into the patrol car while waiting for an ambulance to arrive. Once the child began vomiting, the unnamed agent rushed the mother and child to a hospital, where they were placed in an intensive care unit.

The mother and child are expected to recover and then be processed by immigration officials upon their release from the hospital.