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October Stats Show Decrease in Border Arrests

City & State

Border Patrol officers at the southern border wall. | Image form U.S. CBP

The United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP), published numbers showing the month of October experienced a drop in the number of arrests of unlawful migrants.   

Overall, Fiscal Year 2021, which covers the period from October 1, 2020, to September 30, 2021,  witnessed a significant number of unlawful migrant arrests. However, October 2021 figures indicate that the current migration uptick could be slowly winding down.  

CBP officials apprehended 164,303 individuals in October 2021 in the southwestern United States. In comparison, 192,001 were apprehended in the previous month of  September 

In a press release dated November 15, 2021, CBP officials noted that October is the third consecutive month in which border arrests have fallen and that many of the enforcement encounters involved individuals whom law enforcement had previously encountered.     

According to CBP, there were 117,260 “unique individuals” encountered in the southwestern sector in October.   

Hayden Sparks of The Texan noted that CBP ‘s sector-by-sector breakdown, updated on November 3, revealed 98,474 enforcement encounters in Texas border patrol sectors such as Big Bend, Del Rio, El Paso, Laredo, and the Rio Grande.  These figures represent a 23% decrease from September 2021.    

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) recently questioned Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas during a congressional hearing, declaring that Mayorkas “broke” the immigration system.    

Generally speaking, apprehension numbers do not include unlawful migrants who escape border agents. These are usually classified as “got-aways.”

When questioned by Cruz, Mayorkas could not give a rough estimate of the number of recorded “got-aways” for the calendar year of 2021.    

In his testimony, Mayorkas stated that approximately 125,000 unaccompanied children were placed in the custody of the United States Department of Health and Human Services through October 31.    

Cruz also pushed Mayorkas to reveal any details about Homeland Security’s efforts to reinstate the previous Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, which requires people to stay in Mexico while seeking asylum in the US.

In a ruling earlier this year, a federal judge instructed the DHS to reinstate “Remain in Mexico.” The United States Supreme Court later upheld the verdict.   

“What would you say to the judge if the judge was asking why you should not be held in contempt and incarcerated for defying a federal court order?” Cruz inquired.  

“It is because we are implementing the court’s order in good faith, we are working with Mexico; it requires a bilateral relationship and agreement,” Mayorkas explained.  

Subsequently, Cruz asked if the Biden administration told the Mexican government to “resist” the reimplementation of “Remain in Mexico.”    

Mayorkas responded, “No, and I should also indicate to you, senator, that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), under the sex offenders operation known as SOAR, apprehended 495 individuals between June 4 and September 1 who committed sex offenses and we’re very focused on public safety.”