Operation Lone Star Holds The Line To Defend Southern Border
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 496,700 illegal immigrant apprehensions and more than 38,700 criminal arrests, with more than 35,100 felony charges. In the fight against the fentanyl crisis, Texas law enforcement has seized over 454 million lethal doses of fentanyl during this border mission.
Texas has also transported:
- Over 12,500 migrants to Washington, D.C. since April 2022
- Over 37,500 migrants to New York City since August 2022
- Over 31,200 migrants to Chicago since August 2022
- Over 3,400 migrants to Philadelphia since November 2022
- Over 16,000 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:
On Wednesday, Governor Abbott issued a statement on Texas’ constitutional right to defend and protect itself as President Joe Biden continues to attack Texas and refuse to perform his duties to secure the border.
"The Executive Branch of the United States has a constitutional duty to enforce federal laws protecting States, including immigration laws on the books right now," reads the statement. "President Biden has instructed his agencies to ignore federal statutes that mandate the detention of illegal immigrants. The failure of the Biden Administration to fulfill the duties imposed by Article IV, § 4 has triggered Article I, § 10, Clause 3, which reserves to this State the right of self-defense. For these reasons, I have already declared an invasion under Article I, § 10, Clause 3 to invoke Texas’s constitutional authority to defend and protect itself. That authority is the supreme law of the land and supersedes any federal statutes to the contrary."
Governor Abbott joined America’s Newsroom on Thursday morning where he argued Texas’ right to self-defense from the Biden Administration’s failure to secure the border.
“Texas has a right as a state to stop criminals from coming into our state, to make arrests of those criminals—and we have National Guard as well as Texas Department of Public Safety officers who are there to make those arrests and to deny illegal entry,” said Governor Abbott. “And Joe Biden actually does have an option here. Joe Biden’s option is to enforce the laws of the United States and stop this illegal entry.”
An 18-year-old human smuggler led DPS troopers on a high-speed pursuit in Webb County late last week. The teenager drove recklessly through several parking lots and into oncoming traffic trying to evade troopers. Eventually striking a DPS Patrol Unit, which stopped the pursuit, the driver and two illegal immigrants bailed out and ran. The driver, Ricardo Hernandez from Laredo, was eventually arrested and charged with evading arrest, four counts of smuggling of persons with the likelihood of serious bodily injury, and aggravated assault on a public servant. Four illegal immigrants were referred to Border Patrol.
DPS Brush Team Arrests Smuggling Guide Wanted For Murder
Members of the DPS Brush Team arrested a smuggling guide wanted for murder in Mexico this week. The guide was helping seven illegal immigrants cross the Rio Grande in Mission. Elipidio Camacho Barajas, 35, of Mexico was arrested for felony human smuggling. Barajas was also wanted out of Mexico for murder and has a dozen previous apprehensions for illegal entry with three convictions. Seven illegal immigrants were also apprehended as part of the joint anti-smuggling operation with the US Border Patrol.
DPS Troopers Arrest Three For Criminal Trespass At Shelby Park
DPS Troopers arrested two males from the Republic of Azerbaijan and one male from Ecuador for criminal trespass after crossing through concertina wire at Shelby Park in Eagle Pass. All were arrested and taken into custody on state charges of criminal trespass.
Modular Mobile Surveillance Systems (M2S2) and operators are the newest force multipliers deployed by the Texas National Guard along the border. M2S2s, operated from trucks, are equipped with advanced cameras that can detect the presence of migrant caravans long before they begin crossing the border illegally.
“It allows you to go ahead and see in thermals, daytime, magnifying zoom up to 20 miles,” said Staff Sgt. Zachary Chaffee. “You can zoom in with both a radar and camera systems. With the truck, it allows us a much more advanced camera and thermal. You can see them in black, black hot, white hot, red, predator vision. Texas itself—the Texas National Guard—is being a trailblazer, using that new equipment to go ahead and monitor the border and make sure it’s safe.”