EL PASO, Texas (AP) — The U.S. Border Patrol reports it has taken more than 700 migrants into custody at the Texas-Mexico border in El Paso within a 24-hour period.
In a statement, the patrol said the detentions involved several large groups of migrants that crossed the border illegally late Tuesday and Wednesday. It said the groups are comprised mostly of Central American families and unaccompanied juveniles.
One unaccompanied 2-year-old child was found among the groups. The Border Patrol says it’s now working with international and domestic agencies to locate the parents.
The Border Patrol says two convicted sex offenders were found among the groups, and a 28-year-old U.S. citizen who proclaimed himself a prison gang member who was wanted on an outstanding federal escape warrant. The person was turned over to U.S. marshals.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection released data Tuesday that showed a record number of inadmissible families being apprehended border-wide, with the greatest increase coming in the El Paso Sector. That covers two far-western Texas counties and all of New Mexico.
CBP reported 36,298 famili2/28es crossing the border illegally in the first half of fiscal year 2019 in the El Paso Sector, a 17-fold increase over the first half of the previous fiscal year. In the first half of fiscal year 2019, CBP reported a four-fold increase in the numbers of unaccompanied juveniles crossing the sector border illegally.