Federal Criminal Prosecutions Drop Along Southwest Border
(02 Apr 2019) The latest available case-by-case records from federal prosecutors for February 2019 show Customs and Border Protection (CBP)-referred prosecutions dropped by 12 percent last month. At the same time, the number of Border Patrol apprehensions rose between January and February. While most attention has been given to the jump in the number of families, the number of adults traveling without children picked up by Border Patrol agents were up by 26 percent in February over January levels.

Under this Administration's announced "zero tolerance" policy, adults traveling without children continue to be subject to criminal prosecution for illegal entry. But with apprehensions up and criminal prosecutions down, this left a much larger number who were not referred for criminal prosecution.

During February 2019, a generous estimate indicates criminal prosecutions had fallen to only 38 percent of total Border Patrol apprehensions of adults arrested traveling alone and not part of any family group. This does not count individuals at ports-of-entry who were found seeking to unlawfully enter using fraudulent documents, or individuals caught at ports-of-entry illegally smuggling individuals, drugs, or cargo.

For more details, including changes in drug prosecutions, see:

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