Posted on March 24, 2021

Border Patrol in Rio Grande Valley Releasing Illegal Crossers into US Without Court Date

Griff Jenkins and Yael Halon, Fox News, March 21, 2021

Fox News confirmed Sunday that Border Patrol agents in the Rio Grande Valley Sector (RGV) have begun to process and release illegal border crossers who claim asylum without issuing a Notice to Appear (NTA) – allowing them to depart custody without scheduling a court date for a hearing.

The unprecedented move places the responsibility of seeking an asylum hearing on the migrants through Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) or legal assistance.

Multiple Border Patrol agents confirmed the new process to Fox News, revealing that they have been directed to use prosecutorial discretion (PD) to forgo the hours-long process of paperwork required to issue an NTA amid the surge of migrants at the border.

Instead, migrants are registered into the system with biometrical data taken and largely released into the public – in one instance – at a bus station in McAllen, TX. {snip} Border Patrol agents emphasized that this does not apply to unaccompanied children.

A senior source with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) told Fox News on Saturday that officials were considering the controversial move because the ongoing crisis on the border has “become so dire that BP [Border Patrol] has no choice but to release people nearly immediately after apprehension because there is no space to hold people even to do necessary NTA paperwork.”