The number of illegal immigrants apprehended after crossing into the United States from Mexico soared above 200,000 in July, the exact opposite of the usual seasonal trend, according to preliminary numbers from U.S. authorities.
Border Patrol agents encountered 205,029 illegal aliens in July, according to the preliminary figures, which were released by Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas).
That’s the largest monthly apprehension number since fiscal year 2000.
Another 37,400 immigrants evaded capture.
The White House and Customs and Border Protection did not respond to requests for comment.
However, a border official said in a court filing Monday that the number of border encounters appeared to increase in July, with agents encountering an average of 6,779 people a day.
“Overall, according to preliminary data, CBP is likely to have encountered about 210,000 individuals in July,” David Shahoulian, assistant secretary for border and immigration policy for the Department of Homeland Security, wrote in the document, which was obtained by The Epoch Times and lodged in a case dealing with Title 42.
Besides coming in at the highest total encounter number since fiscal year 2000, preliminary data indicate a record number of unaccompanied minors, or illegal immigrant children who arrive without an adult, crossed the border in July, as well as the second-highest number of family units ever.
The latest jump shows “this is now beyond any debate as to whether there is a full blown border crisis,” Todd Bensman, senior national security fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies, told The Epoch Times.
“So now you’re looking at another 15,000-plus, and not counting the getaways. That’s an astounding number that the Biden administration simply has to address with deterrence-based policies,” Bensman said. “They have to do it. They have to do it now. Because the communities down there and the country is being overrun.”