Texas Launches Most Wanted Criminal Illegal Immigrants List
Texas Launches Most Wanted Criminal Illegal Immigrants List

By Tom Ozimek

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has announced the launch of the state’s “10 Most Wanted Criminal Illegal Immigrants” list, aiming to bolster law enforcement efforts to capture repeat offenders who entered the United States illegally and have committed serious crimes in Texas.

The new initiative, created in partnership with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) and funded by the governor’s Public Safety Office, will offer cash rewards for any person who provides information leading to the arrest of the criminal aliens on the list.

In announcing the list on June 5, the Republican governor criticized President Joe Biden’s immigration policies, drawing a contrast with those of his predecessor, President Donald Trump.

“When President Joe Biden took office, he dismantled every effective border policy his predecessor put into place,“ Mr. Abbott said in a statement. ”As a result, we have seen record high levels of illegal immigration, including dangerous criminals and terrorists, who are a threat to the public safety of our state and our nation.”

Most of the 10 individuals on the new wanted list have multiple offenses on their rap sheet. Six of them are wanted for sex crimes against children.

The governor further emphasized that the new list is part of Texas’s ongoing efforts to keep Texans safe and fight crime.

“Texas is a law-and-order state, and with the help of our fellow Texans, we will ensure that the illegal immigrants on this list are taken off our streets and put behind bars to keep our communities safe,” Mr. Abbott said.

Mr. Abbott’s announcement warned Texans not to try to apprehend the criminal illegal immigrants on the list and instead provide tips by calling the crime stoppers hotline (1-800-252-8477) or by submitting a tip on the DPS website or to submit a Facebook tip.

Border Crisis

Republicans have blamed President Biden’s policies for fueling the border crisis, while calling for measures such as ending the Biden administration’s contentious “catch-and-release” policy, expanding expedited removals, renewing border wall construction, and reinstating the Trump-era “Remain in Mexico” policy.

President Trump has accused President Biden and Democrats of pushing open border policies as part of a bid to expand the Democrat voter base to gain electoral power, while vowing to implement a massive initiative to deport illegal immigrants.

The White House did not respond to Mr. Abbott’s allegations linking the Biden administration’s border policies to record high levels of illegal immigration and asylum claims.

President Biden recently signed an executive order that would shut down certain asylum requests at the southern border once the average number of daily encounters exceeds 2,500.

Democrats have blamed congressional Republicans for hypocrisy on the border crisis, saying they failed to back a border security bill backed by President Biden that would have also ordered the suspension of asylum requests and the automatic denial of entrance to illegal immigrants once the daily crossings exceeded 5,000.

Republicans objected to the measure as insufficient, warning that it could even make the situation worse by potentially codifying entry for 5,000 illegal immigrants into the country.

Terror Threat in Focus

Beyond the sheer scale of illegal immigration, there have also been serious national security concerns.

For instance, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) recently predicted that it’s just a matter of time before a terror attack takes place on U.S. soil after Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines confirmed that a human smuggling network with ties to the ISIS terror group was involved in facilitating the passage of illegal immigrants across the U.S.-Mexico border.

The senator’s forewarning came as the latest Homeland Threat Assessment indicates that foreign terrorists are actively gathering information on travel routes that could facilitate their entry into the United States.

It also follows the FBI director’s March 11 testimony before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, in which he warned that there was “no doubt” that criminals had entered the country across the southern border.

“There is a particular network that has—some of the overseas facilitators of the smuggling network have—ISIS ties that we’re very concerned about, and we’ve been spending enormous amounts of effort with our partners investigating,” FBI director Christopher Wray testified.

Mr. Wray added that threats from various groups had reached a “whole other level.”

The FBI and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have also recently issued a public service announcement saying that foreign terrorist organizations, such as ISIS, could target certain events across the United States during the LGBT community’s Pride Month-related events in June.

So far this fiscal year, agents have encountered 196 individuals on the FBI’s terrorist watchlist trying to enter the United States, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection data, with 81 of them caught trying to enter illegally between ports of entry.

The latest data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shows that another 128,900 illegal immigrants were caught entering the United States between ports of entry in April. This brings the total number of people who entered the country illegally under President Joe Biden, excluding gotaways, to over 9 million, though some estimates indicate that figure could be much higher.

For instance, House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) said in mid-April that he believes the 9 million is a vast undercount and that the true number is closer to 16 million.

“Since Joe Biden went into the Oval Office, it began on day one, they began to open that border wide,” the speaker said during an April 10 press conference, while noting that the Biden administration had taken over 60 specific executive actions and agency actions to “open the border wide.”

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