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Operation Lone Star Reinforces Border Barriers To Deter Illegal Crossings

TEXAS, January 19 - January 19, 2024 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

Governor Greg Abbott, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), and the Texas National Guard continue 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 496,000 illegal immigrant apprehensions and more than 38,500 criminal arrests, with more than 34,900 felony charges. In the fight against the fentanyl crisis, Texas law enforcement has seized over 453 million lethal doses of fentanyl during this border mission.

Texas has also bused:

  • Over 12,500 migrants to Washington, D.C. since April 2022
  • Over 37,400 migrants to New York City since August 2022
  • Over 31,100 migrants to Chicago since August 2022
  • Over 3,400 migrants to Philadelphia since November 2022
  • Over 15,900 migrants to Denver since May 18
  • Over 1,500 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:

Governor Abbott: Blame Biden For Migrants Making Dangerous Illegal Crossings

On Wednesday, Governor Abbott slammed the Biden Administration on X, formerly known as Twitter, for blaming Texas for the deaths of migrants who make dangerous illegal crossings in the Rio Grande River.

Sharing a letter from Attorney General Ken Paxton to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Governor Abbott noted a federal judge’s previous ruling that states the Biden Administration creates an incentive for migrants to make dangerous illegal crossings.


Governor Abbott: Texas Using Every Available Strategy To Secure The Border

Governor Abbott shared construction video of Texas’ border wall earlier this week highlighting the state's continued efforts to use every available tool and strategy to secure the border in President Biden’s absence.


WATCH: DPS Arrests Two Teenage Human Smugglers In Val Verde County

A 17-year-old human smuggler from San Antonio led DPS troopers on a high-speed vehicle pursuit in Val Verde County. The driver was eventually stopped at Laughlin Airforce Base, where troopers discovered the driver and 16-year-old passenger were smuggling five illegal immigrants, including an 11-year-old.

Both the driver and passenger were arrested for smuggling of persons. The five illegal immigrants were referred to Border Patrol.


WATCH: Human Smuggler Leads DPS On Vehicle Pursuit At Speeds Over 100 Mph

A smuggler led DPS troopers on a high-speed vehicle pursuit, reaching speeds of 109 miles per hour and driving recklessly through a neighborhood in Val Verde County over the weekend. During the pursuit, the driver allowed two illegal immigrants to bail out, then lost control and crashed into a fence.

The driver was arrested and charged with evading arrest and smuggling of persons. With the assistance of the Del Rio Police Department, the two illegal immigrants were apprehended and referred to Border Patrol.


WATCH: Texas National Guard Reinforces Strategic Border Barriers In Shelby Park

The Texas Army National Guard recently reinforced strategic barriers at Shelby Park in Eagle Pass, a hot spot for illegal immigration along the Texas-Mexico border. 1 Lt. Alexander Johnson, Bravo Company Executive Officer, Task Force Eagle, explained the importance of the Texas Army National Guard’s increased presence at Shelby Park.

“If the Texas Army National Guard were not here, then individuals would be able to cross through here—we’d have no idea who they are, what they’re doing here, what their purpose is,” said 1 Lt. Johnson. “But when they go through the legal point of entry, that’s when the proper authorities are able to do that and see who they are."


Texas National Guard Surveillance Systems Support Law Enforcement Partners

The Texas National Guard has deployed a mobile video surveillance system and small unmanned aerial systems to monitor illegal crossings and criminal activity along the Texas-Mexico border.

These systems provide a bird’s eye view of large areas and allow information to be shared with state law enforcement partners.