U.S. Border Patrol agents in California arrested an illegal alien previously convicted of raping a child, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced on April 6.
The 46-year-old male, who is a citizen of Mexico, was arrested on April 5 by Border Patrol agents assigned to the El Centro sector, after he illegally entered the United States.
Agents found via a record check that the man was previously convicted of “rape, sodomy, and oral copulation” with a person under the age of 18, according to a CBP release. He was convicted in California in 2007 and was sentenced to more than nine years in prison. He was removed from the United States in 2014.
He’s been charged as a convicted felon with reentry after deportation, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
Since the start of the current fiscal year on Oct. 1, 2020, Border Patrol agents in the El Centro sector have arrested or removed 17 individuals who were convicted or wanted on sexual offense charges.
Separately, Border Patrol agents in the San Diego sector arrested a child sex offender on April 4. The man arrested was one of two illegal aliens who were trying to hide in thick brush in the mountains near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry. They were found and arrested by an agent patrolling the area.
A record check showed that the man is a 35-year-old El Salvadorian national who was convicted in 2009 in Virginia for aggravated sexual battery of a child under 13. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison but was removed to El Salvador in 2014 after part of his criminal sentence was suspended.
As with the 46-year-old Mexican citizen, the Salvadoran man will be charged with felony illegal reentry after deportation. He is being held in federal custody, pending prosecution; the other man was sent back to Mexico.
In the current fiscal year, San Diego sector Border Patrol agents have arrested 31 sex offenders, a number that already tops the previous fiscal year, when a total of 25 offenders were arrested.
The United States is currently experiencing a surge in illegal immigration along the U.S.–Mexico border.
The number of arrests from October 2020 to the end of February 2021 was 396,958, representing a more than 96 percent increase from the year-earlier period, according to CBP data. In February alone, the CBP apprehended 100,441 aliens who crossed the southern border illegally.
As for illegal aliens who have evaded capture so far in 2021, Deputy Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz estimated the number to be at “way over 100,000 people.”
President Joe Biden and other U.S. officials have urged migrants to refrain from illegally crossing the border into the United States. Biden in late March defended his policies and characterized the border surge as something that “happens every year,” and is due to “a whole range of things” including earthquakes, floods, lack of food, and gang violence.
He also blamed former President Donald Trump for the situation. White House press secretary Jen Psaki last month said, “The last administration left us a dismantled and unworkable system,” referring to the situation at the southern border.
Critics, including Republicans, have said the border crisis was largely exacerbated by Biden’s immigration policies, with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) calling the situation a “man-made crisis.”
Cruz, in a statement on March 17, contended that Biden’s calls for a “halt in deportations, mass amnesty, and health care benefits for illegal immigrants” during his presidential campaign in September 2020 had served as a signal to potential illegal aliens that “the border would be wide open” under a Biden presidency.
“And as a result, people came,” Cruz said, later adding, “This crisis is the direct result of President Biden’s radical open borders agenda.”
Since taking office, Biden has reversed a number of border policies from the Trump administration, including pausing border wall construction and announcing a halt to the “Remain in Mexico” policy—which required asylum-seekers to stay in Mexico while awaiting immigration proceedings.
The Biden administration has also stopped expelling from the country unaccompanied minors—children who crossed the border illegally without an adult. Adults and family units are generally still being expelled from the United States.
Biden on his first day in office proposed a plan to Congress seeking to provide a pathway to U.S. citizenship for an estimated 11 million people living in the United States illegally. Since then, have Democrats introduced a reform bill—the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021—that closely models Biden’s proposal.