By Kumar Balani
NEW YORK, NY – In fiscal year 2018 (Oct. 01, 2017 to Sept. 30, 2018) Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) agents convicted 8,328 illegal aliens of various crimes who had been arrested for attempting to unlawfully enter the United States from portions along its 1,954 mile-long border with Mexico. In fiscal year 2016 there were 16,091 convictions, and in fiscal year 2017, there were 10,708. So the total number of convictions for the three fiscal years was 35,217.
We reported in Biz India Online News, as no other US news medium has ever done before, that there were nearly 35,000 crimes committed by illegal aliens in fiscal years 2016 and 2017 and 11 months of fiscal year 2018. This was based on data we obtained from compiled CBP records.
Read that article 35,000 Illegal Aliens’ Crimes Unreported http://www.bizindia.net/35000-illegal-aliens-crimes-unreported/
The unlawful entry of people to the US has recently not been limited to Mexicans alone. In recent months, people from Central American countries – particularly those from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua – have been traveling by bus to Mexico. From there, they continue their way to a mainly open, non-physical (some term it ‘non-existent’) border with the US.
They are no longer limited to small groups of a dozen or so people as before. These days, they number in the hundreds and even thousands, and they are called ‘caravans’ (see photo). These caravans of people now even march on foot to the border for days and even weeks, resting in between, making themselves comfortable in makeshift camps. For example, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported that some 6,200 Central American people in Tijuana, Mexico, and another 3,000 in nearby Mexicali, camped on Sunday, 25 November 2018.
Once they reach the US border, they attempt to apply for asylum. Often, migrants get into confrontations with CBP agents whose job is to maintain peace and order. Many are arrested for illegal entry or illegal re-entry, are tried for these crimes, and get deported. Thousands of others have arrested for a variety of other types of crimes await trials to face adjudication.
The recent rise of the phenomenon of caravans of thousands of aliens attempting to cross the southern border and enter the United States illegally has caused much worry among Americans. The illegal entry problem persists, even as the numbers have reduced since Donald Trump became President. Through many parts of the demarcation line between the US and Mexico, different types of barriers have already been built, and this process is continuing.
The results of a recent poll by the Gallup organization published on November 20, 2018 in an article on its website by Justin McCarthy entitled Immigration Up Sharply as Most Important U.S. Problem revealed that ‘immigration / illegal aliens’ was the top problem chosen among a list of 10, by respondent Americans, jumping from 13 percent of people surveyed in October, to 21 percent in November. In the same period, the issue of ‘dissatisfaction with government / poor leadership’ dropped from 27 percent to 18 percent.
The illegal alien-entry-and-crime-problem persists even as the numbers have reduced since Donald Trump became President (crimes halved from 16,000+ in 2016 to just 8,000+ in 2018). Through hundreds of miles of the demarcation line between the US and Mexico, different types of mostly permeable fences (not high enough, and can be broken through) were built during the terms of previous US presidents. Walls with effective deterrence could be designed and built. Now that funding for building better walls is no longer a problem, we await a positive outcome
Kumar (Kem) Balani has an AB Journalism degree from the University of the Philippines and an MA in Politics from New York University. He is founder and publisher of Biz India Online News since 2002. Go to www.BizIndia.net to read book reviews, features, news, opinion columns, and videos on business, entertainment, investing, law, sports, technology, and more.
This column first appeared in the Daily Tribune in the Philippines on Sunday, April 28, 2019. Read Kumar Balani’s columns in that newspaper: http://tribune.net.ph/index.php/author/kumar-balani/