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BP Agents Told to Stop Making Illegal Immigrant Arrests

BP Agents Told to Stop Making Illegal Immigrant Arrests

A United States border patrol agent catches an illegal immigrant crossing from Mexico to the U.S. in San Ysidro, California, April 13, 2011. [AP]

Associated Press

April 27, 2011

COCHISE COUNTY, AZ – An Arizona sheriff says U.S. Border Patrol officials have repeatedly told him they have been ordered to reduce — at times even stop — arrests of illegal immigrants caught trying to cross the U.S. border.

Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever stated that a supervisor with the U.S. Border Patrol told him as recently as this month that the federal agency’s office on Arizona’s southern border was under orders to keep apprehension numbers down during specific reporting time periods.

“The senior supervisor agent is telling me about how their mission is now to scare people back,” Dever said in an intervie. “He said, ‘I had to go back to my guys and tell them not to catch anybody, that their job is to chase people away. … They were not to catch anyone, arrest anyone. Their job was to set up posture, to intimidate people, to get them to go back.”

Dever said his recent conversation with the Border Patrol supervisor was the latest in a series of communications on the subject that he has had with various federal agents over the last two years. Dever said he plans to relay the substance of these conversations when he testifies under oath next month before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

“I will raise my hand to tell the truth and swear to God, and nothing is more serious or important than that,” he said. “I’m going to tell them that, here’s what I hear and see every day: I had conversation with agent A, B, C, D and this is what they told me.”

Dever’s charges were vigorously denied by a commander with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

“The claim that Border Patrol supervisors have been instructed to underreport or manipulate our statistics is unequivocally false,” Jeffery Self, commander of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Joint Field Command in Arizona, said in a written statement.

“I took an oath that I take very seriously, and I find it insulting that anyone, especially a fellow law enforcement officer, would imply that we would put the protection of the American public and security of our nation’s borders in danger just for a numbers game," he said. "Our mission does not waiver based on political climate, and it never will. To suggest that we are ambiguous in enforcing our laws belittles the work of more than 6,000 CBP employees in Arizona who dedicate their lives to protect our borders every day.”

In recent days, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has said the U.S.-Mexican border is more secure than ever, and Homeland Security officials have used recent statistics to support those claims.

“There is a perception that the border is worse now than it ever has been,” Napolitano said at the El Paso border crossing last week. “That is wrong. The border is better now than it ever has been.”

Dever doesn’t agree.

“Janet Napolitano says the border is more secure than it’s ever been. I’ve been here for 60 years, and I’m telling you that’s not true,” he said.

The sheriff of Santa Cruz County, which borders Dever’s Cochise County to the west, said, “This is news to me,” when asked about reports that border agents were being told to turn illegal immigrants back to Mexico rather than arrest them.

“It comes as a complete surprise that that would be something that’s going around,” Santa Cruz County Sheriff Tony Estrada said. “I meet with Dever all the time and I have great respect for him, so I expect he’d come forward and say what he knows and give the source.

“Not knowing who the source is, how reliable that source is, I really don’t have much of a position,” Estrada said. “I’ve been around a real long time and haven’t heard anything like this. By the same token, you learn new things every day.”

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  • Meangreen01_max50


    over 3 years ago


    This is pure BS by a Sheriff up for election. We have not been ordered to "not arrest" illegal aliens. This would be malfeasance on the part by any Border Patrol Agent. None of us lack the spinal fortitude to stand up to an illegal order if one were given. Simple fact is this: we will deter, apprehend, or hunt down anything coming across the border illegally. It's what we do, and we're the best at it.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago

    Why does this NOT surprise me one iota.The leadership of this country has been brain fried for eons.They could care less what the tax payers want or need.The individuals who are issuing these orders should be incarcerated.Our current administration in D.C. is a prime example of the "screw the public": mentality.

  • Lt


    over 3 years ago


    I believe the Sheriff its great a guy in his position will do the right thing GOOD JOB SHERIFF i wish more elected officials would do the right thing Ive been a city cop for 13 years and i got to say I wouldn't mind being a Deputy for this guy

  • Angel_kincaid_park_2014_max50


    over 3 years ago


    OH BOY! Here we go.....
    BE Safe All.....

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago


    I'm not surprised at what anyone would have to say that works for Janet Napolitano. I am inclined to believe Sheriff Dever. Remember, Napolitano considers terrorists: 'man-made disasters," meaning that we have no terrorists in the country and she claims not to know anything about the guns the ATF shipped across the border. CAZ is right, politicians give our comedians endless material. If Sheriff Dever has to say this under oath next week in front of the Feds, I don't think he'd lie about it now. I'm glad there are law enforcement officers willing to have the guts to stand against the bureaucrats in D.C. I'd really love to see Napolitano and Eric Holder work at a dangerous area of the Mexican border in a border patrol uniform for a month and see what they say afterwards-they could make it an "UNDERCOVER BOSS" episode!! Yes and we'll see that happen when my dream of world peace and fabulous wealth come true. Stay Safe everyone.

  • Fallenherobadge-3-1_max50_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Sounds like someone needs to get a physical and see if they still have a spine. I love Politicians they keep me laughing. I wonder what the POTUS would have to say on this issue. I can only imagine what he would say "I support the order for AMERICAN LEO'S to work in Mexico without guns so why shouldn't give the order or have someone I am in charge of give the order not to arrest illegals." And these people get paid the big bucks LOL they are jokes.

  • Bearcat_2_max600_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Stay strong Sheriff Dever, this message needs to make it to mainstream media. It's long past time for this Country to stop worrying about being "Politically Correct" and to start worrying about American ideals, values and lives. We have real issues taking place in this Country and it's time our "political leaders" stop squabbling with each other like brats, put their personal agendas aside and start doing the job they were elected to do.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago


    This isn't at all a shock. Many local cops run into illegal immigrants all of the time and have no where to take them. The local prison will not take them and if you call the Feds for an illegal Mexican who isn't wanted for a past crime nothing will happen. WHEN this country is serious about removing illegal immigrants they will have a procedure in place on where to take them.

  • Screen_shot_2011-04-10_at_8


    over 3 years ago


    Keep fighting Sherrif Dever.

  • Cruise_2014_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Bump LonnaNJ and JD_82. It stands to reason (and I don't get why our government hasn't figured this out) that someone who is willing to disregard and circumvent (can you saw "break"?) our laws just to gain access to our country are NOT going to be upstanding, law-abiding citizens who contribute to our society in a positive manner.

  • 582602_3283682777720_334551836_n_max50


    over 3 years ago


    BIG BUMG JD_82, My Company has hired them, so I have to agree with you %100 My typical day at a Sports Venue:: 1. After Check-in They would wonder around for hours. 2. I would check with (Spanish Speaking) woman in HR, whom often said "they Know" 3. Some would ACTUALLY use someone elses work ID(nonpictured then) if that person couldn't make it that day. 4. I would get radio calls from 60 different Stand Leads, b/c their ppl refused to work stating "I NO Understand", even with other Spanish people working in the same Stand. (lol) 5th After every event we do Inventory, and balancing out product- to- Cash on our inventory control program and comparing register receipts, we knew what wasparticullar item was stolen, and how much revenue was lost which was usually in the thousands! I Would encourage them to get just get there paperwork correct, and some would scoff and say "I not staying Here". LMFAO! On the flip side, One girl, i went to her house to deliver clothes for her kid, she later asked me if I could put a Car in her Name. LMFAO! Sheeesh. Maybe not all, but i hate to say ALOT STEAL, Play the US & work/School Visa's, Get Fake Marriages, and some join gangs and even have commited Murder and bounce back to......?

  • Steve_mcqueen_max50


    over 3 years ago



  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago


    I see what Ted Nugent was saying about our Government with relationships to Border Security issues. This is a total outrage why....... Whoever the Einstein was that brought this down is a total freakin MORON!!!!!!!!

  • 100_1019_max50


    over 3 years ago


    There is no way our Southern Border is safe!!! No Way!! The enforcement seems to be put on the local Law Enforcement Agencies.. I say build a big wall, and make it have an electric fence in front of it!! See if that works!! Good job Sheriff, you are doing a great job!!!!

  • 1051193310_l_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Why would our "Border Patrol" be required to enforce the borders? This is not just a liberal or conservative thing, this has become a cultural thing. I am enraged at this!

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