Texas Border Business
AUSTIN, Texas – Governor Greg Abbott, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), and the Texas National Guard are continuing to work together to secure the border; stop the smuggling of drugs, weapons, and people into Texas; and prevent, detect, and interdict transnational criminal activity between ports of entry.
Since the launch of Operation Lone Star, the multi-agency effort has led to over 435,700 illegal immigrant apprehensions and more than 34,000 criminal arrests, with more than 30,900 felony charges reported. In the fight against fentanyl, Texas law enforcement has seized over 428 million lethal doses of fentanyl during this border mission.
Texas has also bused:
- Over 11,300 migrants to Washington, D.C. since April 2022
- Over 13,500 migrants to New York City since August 2022
- Over 7,000 migrants to Chicago since August 2022
- Over 2,600 migrants to Philadelphia since November 2022
- Over 1,100 migrants to Denver since May 18
- Over 480 migrants to Los Angeles since June 14
Operation Lone Star continues to fill the dangerous gaps created by the Biden Administration’s refusal to secure the border. Every individual who is apprehended or arrested and every ounce of drugs seized would have otherwise made their way into communities across Texas and the nation due to President Joe Biden’s open border policies.
RECENT HIGHLIGHTS FROM OPERATION LONE STAR:
On Wednesday, the Office of the Governor issued a statement following the ruling by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas against Texas maintaining its sovereign authority to secure the border with floating marine barriers:
“Texas will appeal. Today’s court decision merely prolongs President Biden’s willful refusal to acknowledge that Texas is rightfully stepping up to do the job that he should have been doing all along. This ruling is incorrect and will be overturned on appeal. We will continue to utilize every strategy to secure the border, including deploying Texas National Guard soldiers and Department of Public Safety troopers and installing strategic barriers. Our battle to defend Texas’ sovereign authority to protect lives from the chaos caused by President Biden’s open border policies has only begun. Texas is prepared to take this fight all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.”
Responding to reports that the Biden Administration is considering forcing some migrant families to remain in Texas while awaiting asylum screening, Governor Abbott said Texas will continue to bus migrants to Washington, D.C., a self-declared sanctuary city, to provide relief to overwhelmed border communities.
Governor Abbott this week announced a second allotment of Naloxone (NARCAN) will be distributed to all Texas police departments as part of the statewide “One Pill Kills” campaign. Law enforcement personnel, including municipal police, Independent School District police, and police departments at higher education institutions, will be eligible to receive a portion of this allotment based on county population and size.
“Texas continues to lead the fight against the growing national fentanyl crisis, as President Biden’s reckless open border policies allow historic levels of fentanyl to flood across our border and into communities across the country,” said Governor Abbott. “In April, we launched this program to distribute NARCAN to every county in Texas to combat this crisis. With this next allotment of NARCAN, Texas can help ensure that every Texas community—including our schools—has this live-saving medication to save innocent lives from the devastation of fentanyl poisonings.”
DPS Lt. Chris Olivarez joined Fox News this week to push back on claims from the federal government that the Biden Administration is successfully securing the border despite the record number of illegal border crossings. He also discussed the hypocrisy of the Los Angeles City Council threatening to sue Governor Abbott for busing migrants to the West Coast sanctuary city while ignoring the root cause of the border crisis—President Biden’s refusal to enforce federal immigration laws.
“[The Biden Administration] has created the largest influx of illegal immigration in our history, and they have not taken any immediate action to prevent illegal border crossings between the ports of entry,” said Lt. Olivarez. “These illegal immigrants do not want to stay in Texas. They want to go to these sanctuary cities. To say 400 illegal immigrants are going to overwhelm their city, that is a fraction of what we deal with in Texas. We deal with close to 4,000 daily encounters in Texas alone with illegal border crossings.”
Following a ruling this week against Texas’ floating marine barriers, DPS Lt. Olivarez noted to Fox News that the barriers had proven to be effective at deterring dangerous and illegal crossings in the Rio Grande River. Lt. Olivarez explains that the judge’s ruling sends a message to the nation that the federal government will continue to neglect its responsibility to secure the border and attack Governor Abbott for stepping up to do its job.
“Ever since [the marine barrier] was put in place, there has not been a single illegal border crossing either in front of that barrier or anyone trying to swim under the barrier,” said Lt. Olivarez. “It’s not legal under federal law to cross a river or desert between ports of entry. Essentially, the federal government has acknowledged that they’re okay with illegal immigrants crossing the river between ports of entry, they’re okay with women and children crossing the river or desert to seek asylum, they’re okay with illegal immigrants having to pay smugglers in Mexico—some of whom have been assaulted and raped. Some have even lost their lives.”
A DPS trooper arrested a driver from San Antonio after finding six illegal immigrants inside the bed of a truck. The trooper saw the truck stopped along the side of the road in Maverick County, and the immigrants fled and jumped into the brush.
All six illegal immigrants from Mexico were referred to Border Patrol. The driver is charged with smuggling of persons.
Working with Operation Lone Star partners, Texas National Guard soldiers recently responded to a report of an illegal stash house near Laredo and discovered 17 illegal immigrants hiding in squalid conditions without running water. A local resident had reported the suspected stash house to Texas Crime Stoppers.
“I would 100 percent say that we are making a difference here with Operation Lone Star,” said Sgt. 1st Class Vasquez. “We’ve been told by law enforcement that we are their force multiplier. Without our presence here, their job would not be able to be completed like it is now.”
A human smuggler led a DPS trooper and an Iowa State trooper on a high-speed vehicle pursuit in Dimmit County. Prior to taking off, the driver let five illegal immigrants bail out of the car. The driver from Laredo eventually stopped and was arrested. She has been charged with evading arrest and smuggling of persons.
A smuggler led DPS troopers on a high-speed pursuit in Maverick County. The driver from San Antonio evaded through a neighborhood, crashed into several ranch fences, and eventually crashed into a canal.
With assistance from the Texas Game Wardens and Border Patrol, the driver and two illegal immigrants were found hiding in the brush. The driver was arrested and charged with smuggling of persons.
In response to increasing illegal immigrant traffic on The University of Texas Brownsville campus, Texas National Guard Airmen, along with law enforcement partners, installed barriers and continue to patrol the area, regularly apprehending illegal immigrants who attempt to use the campus to evade detection. According to university officials and local law enforcement agencies, illegal immigrant trafficking had been a daily occurrence along the property.
The Texas National Guard soldiers began an army engineer operation to clear brush and install triple-strand concertina wire along the fence line of the college late last year during a large influx of illegal crossings occurring between Brownsville’s two main international ports of entry.
DPS Troopers Assist In Arrest Of Six Smuggling Guides From Mexico
DPS troopers working a brush operation in the Rio Grande Valley arrested six smuggling guides from Mexico who guided multiple groups of illegal immigrants across the Rio Grande River. The operation was done in conjunction with Border Patrol.