US border agency leader resigns amid wave of migrants
The head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection has resigned from his job leading the nation’s largest law enforcement agency as agents encounter record numbers of migrants entering the U.S. from Mexico. Chris Magnus submitted his resignation to President Joe Biden on Saturday, saying it had been “a privilege and honor” to be part of the administration. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Biden had accepted Magnus' resignation.news.yahoo.com
Bob Woodward on revelations from "The Trump Tapes"
Veteran Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward has collected his recorded interviews with former President Donald Trump – eight hours' worth – into an audiobook release, "The Trump Tapes." He talks with CBS News' John Dickerson about Trump's view of the presidency as a trophy and his unsettling communications with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un; and about the question Woodward most regrets not asking.news.yahoo.com
Border Patrol: 8 migrants found dead in Rio Grande at Texas
At least eight migrants were found dead in the Rio Grande after dozens attempted a hazardous crossing near Eagle Pass, Texas, officials said Friday. U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Mexican officials made the discovery Thursday while responding to a large group of people crossing the river following days of heavy rains that had resulted in particularly swift currents. U.S. officials recovered six bodies, while Mexican teams recovered two others, according to a CBP statement.news.yahoo.com
8 migrants dead after dozens swept downriver along Rio Grande in Texas
The bodies of eight people were recovered from the Rio Grande after dozens of migrants were swept downriver near Eagle Pass, Texas, in what appeared to be the deadliest mass-drowning incident along the border in years, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said Friday.washingtonpost.com
187 Cuban migrants arrested after landing in Florida
U.S. immigration officials say 187 Cuban migrants have been arrested after landing in the Florida Keys on 10 separate boats over the weekend. Chief Patrol Agent Walter Slosar of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection posted images of the small boats without passengers on Twitter. The Miami Herald said a large group was seen early Sunday through a livestream at the Southernmost Point buoy in Key West.news.yahoo.com
If you’re planning to travel to the U.S. with food items from overseas, read this
Photo courtesy: The Washington PostUnited States border officials have a message for travelers who bring food items from overseas: Violations will cost you. In the past year alone, U.S. border officials have fined passengers for bringing a wide range of undeclared food items in their luggage, including balut eggs, pork bologna and turkey ham. Here’s what you need to know before bringing food products into the U.S.:Why are some foods not allowed? It also means higher grocery bills and shortage of some food items for consumers. And in all cases, travelers coming to the U.S. should save receipts and original packaging to prove food products’ country of origin, according to the CBP.arabamericannews.com
Across southern Arizona, a full range of border woes for Biden
In Arizona, the polyglot queue in Yuma of what authorities call “give ups,” migrants who willingly seek out U.S. authorities after crossing the Mexican border, served as sharp contrast to the wild chases happening about 300 miles southeast in Nogales.washingtonpost.com
Moth species not seen in a century seized from passenger arriving at Michigan airport
DETROIT – What looked like seeds were recently seized from a passenger arriving at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport, officials said. The seeds later hatched into a “very flashy” moth species that hasn’t been seen since 1912. U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists discovered seeds in the personal baggage of a passenger arriving on a flight from the Philippines in September 2021, according to a May 16 news release. Each year, CBP agriculture specialists intercept tens of thousands of “actionable pests” – those identified through scientific risk assessment and study as being dangerous to the health and safety of U.S. agricultural resources. Upon examination of plants, animal products, and associated items, CBP agriculture specialists determine if these items meet the entry requirements of the United StatesVisit CBP.gov to learn more about what CBP agriculture specialists do to protect agriculture.mlive.com
Fatal boat trip highlights Haitians fleeing violence
Haitians are fleeing in greater numbers to the neighboring Dominican Republic, where they step onto rickety wooden boats as they attempt to reach Puerto Rico — a trip in which 11 Haitian women drowned this week, with dozens of other migrants believed missing.
Ten fake 1936 Red Wings’ Stanley Cup rings seized at U.S. border
CHAMPLAIN, N.Y. – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in New York seized 10 counterfeit 1936 Detroit Red Wings Stanley Cup championship rings. The rings were seized at an entry cargo facility in Champlain because they violated Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) of the iconic Detroit Red Wings trademark. CBP officers determined that the rings had a total suggested retail value of approximately $15,000. These violations threaten the health and safety of American consumers, the economy and national security, according to border agents. “Their role is crucial in protecting both the consumer and businesses from imported fraudulent items.”The 1936 Stanley Cup holds a special place in the hearts of Red Wings fans, since it was the franchise’s first title.mlive.com
Boat carrying Russian migrants lands in Key West, officials say
Monroe County Sheriff Rick Ramsay said the migrants, many carrying luggage, arrived on a 30-foot vessel. He said there remains “some questions” about how many, if any, of the occupants “dissipated into the community” before they could be apprehended.washingtonpost.com
Border authorities find 52 reptiles hidden in man's clothing
A man who tried to slither past U.S. border agents in California had 52 lizards and snakes hidden in his clothing, authorities said Tuesday. The man was driving a truck when he arrived at the San Ysidro border crossing with Mexico on Feb. 25 and was pulled out for additional inspection, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said in a statement. Nine snakes and 43 horned lizards were seized.news.yahoo.com
Investigation of journalists by Customs unit is under review
An internal review has been launched into the actions of a special Customs and Border Protection unit that used sensitive government databases intended to track terrorists to investigate as many as 20 U.S.-based journalists, including an Associated Press reporter.
Over 4,000 migrants, many kids, crowded into Texas facility
Migrants are processed at the intake area of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility, the main detention center for unaccompanied children in the Rio Grande Valley, in Donna, Texas, Tuesday, March 30, 2021. Oscar Escamilla, acting executive officer of the U.S. Border Patrol in the Rio Grande Valley, said 250 to 300 kids enter daily and far fewer leave. Border Patrol agents asked them if they had a contact in the U.S. and allowed the child to call that person. The Border Patrol generally is not supposed to detain children for more than three days, but Health and Human Services lacks space. More than 2,000 kids have been at the Donna facility for more than 72 hours, including 39 for more than 15 days.
Biden is on his heels amid a migrant surge at Mexico border
The Biden administration is facing growing questions about why it wasn't more prepared for an influx of migrants at the southern border. Since Biden’s inauguration, the U.S. has seen a dramatic spike in the number of people encountered by border officials. But Isacson added that the bottleneck was also affected by the lack of cooperation by the Trump administration with the Biden transition. AdThe Biden administration announced on Feb. 2 it would no longer uphold the Trump administration policy of automatically deporting unaccompanied minors seeking asylum. The president and other administration officials in recent days have stepped up efforts to urge migrants not to come.
US govt seizes over 10M phony N95 masks in COVID-19 probe
They have no utility whatsoever,” Homeland Security Secretary Ali Mayorkas said of the fake masks. Homeland Security officials would not say which states the phony masks were sent to, but said criminal charges would be forthcoming. The company delivered some 2 billion N95 masks in 2020 as the pandemic intensified, but in the earlier months, when masks were in short supply, fraudsters took advantage. But phony masks have already made it to front-line workers in other cases. Over the past year there has been more than 1,250 raids by law enforcement resulting in the seizure of millions of fake masks.
Government investigating massive counterfeit N95 mask scam
This December 2020 image provided by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) shows a counterfeit N95 surgical mask that was seized by ICE and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Federal investigators are probing a massive counterfeit N95 mask operation sold in at least five states to hospitals, medical facilities, and government agencies and expect the number to rise significantly in coming weeks. (ICE via AP)WASHINGTON – Federal authorities are investigating a massive counterfeit N95 mask operation in which fake 3M masks were sold in at least five states to hospitals, medical facilities and government agencies. Nearly a year into the pandemic, fraud remains a major problem as scammers seek to exploit hospitals and desperate and weary Americans. There have been already more than 1,250 raids by law enforcement that resulted in the seizure of 10 million counterfeit 3M masks alone.
Birth on a riverbank: Woman's ordeal shows risks at border
Merín gave birth to her daughter next to the Rio Grande, attended to by two Border Patrol agents, showing how lives routinely end up at risk at the U.S.-Mexico border. Mother and child were hospitalized for three days, then processed at a Border Patrol station before being released to Catholic Charities. “There’s so many women in great danger,” said Sister Norma Pimentel, executive director of Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley. The Border Patrol blames smugglers for using people in medical distress as decoys, drawing attention from others trying to sneak into the country. The Border Patrol defends how it treats immigrants and the medical care they receive.
Shots fired at Customs and Border Protection officers on I-96, officials say
Michigan State Police are investigating after a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) vehicle was fired at on I-96 Wednesday. Customs and Border Protection can confirm that a vehicle occupied by CBP Officers was apparently fired upon earlier today on I-96,” a spokesperson said Wednesday. Officials say that no serious injuries were reported. No additional details have been provided. More: Local News
2 detained for speaking Spanish settle border patrol lawsuit
– Two women who were detained in northern Montana by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents for speaking Spanish while shopping at a convenience store have reached an undisclosed monetary settlement in their lawsuit against the agency, the ACLU of Montana announced Tuesday. “Ma’am, the reason I asked you for your ID is because I came in here and I saw that you guys are speaking Spanish, which is very unheard of up here,” O’Neill said in the video. “We stood up to the government because speaking Spanish is not a reason to be racially profile and harassed,” Suda said in a statement provided by the ACLU. In gathering information for the lawsuit, the ACLU said Customs and Border Protection agents in northern Montana acknowledged they routinely profiled non-white people. “If there's somebody speaking Spanish down there it's like all of a sudden you've got five agents swarming in, ‘What’s going on?'
1,700% increase in drug seizures at Michigan ports of entry, CBP reports
DETROIT – The U.S. Customs and Border Protection releases stats every year about the amount of illegal items they confiscate annually. This year, they are reporting a steep increase in items. CBP reported 9,059 pounds of marijuana, 211 pounds of cocaine, 15 pounds of fentanyl and two pounds of meth have been seized from people leaving or entering the United States at Michigan ports of entry. CBP reported a 1,736% increase in seized marijuana and 227% increase in weapons seized -- enough to supply a small army. Why the increase in illegal items crossing the border?
Gloves linked to forced labor in China stopped at LA port
WASHINGTON – A shipment of women’s gloves at a California port has been traced to a factory that uses forced labor of people caught up in a brutal crackdown on ethnic minorities in China, U.S. authorities said Thursday. Overland, a retailer based in Fairfield, Iowa, was seeking to import the gloves and says it has provided proof to Customs that the goods were not made with forced labor and should be released. The administration, which has clashed with China on a range of issues, including trade and the coronavirus outbreak, has also increased enforcement of a U.S. law that bans the importation of goods made with forced labor. Labor and human rights groups say it's impossible to conduct legitimate inspections in Xinjiang because of the oppressive conditions. A bipartisan bill that would declare that all goods manufactured in Xinjiang are the product of forced labor, and therefore banned from the country, passed overwhelmingly last month in the House of Representatives.
US says it will block palm oil from large Malaysian producer
An official from U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Wednesday the agency will detain shipments of palm oil and its products from FGV Holdings Berhad in Malaysia after a wide range of labor abuse indicators were found, including physical and sexual violence and forced child labor. The withhold release order will be effective immediately following a yearlong investigation, said Brenda Smith, executive assistant commissioner at the agency’s Office of Trade. FGV is one of the world’s largest palm oil companies and is connected to Felda, which is owned by the Malaysian government. The order comes days after an Associated Press investigation exposed a litany of labor abuses in the palm oil industry in Malaysia and Indonesia, including on a Felda plantation.
Despite travel restrictions, more than 80 guns seized at Michigan ports of entry this year
DETROIT Since COVID-19 travel restrictions began March 21, U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at Michigan ports of entry have seized more weapons than they did in all of 2019. That includes pistols, revolvers, rifles, shotguns and more. With so many weapons seized at the border with restricted travel, Local 4 Defenders want to know how could this be happening? In 2019, only 62 firearms were seized. So far this year, 81 firearms and 4,000 rounds of ammunition have been seized during a period of restricted travel due to COVID-19.
1,114 pounds of marijuana found in truck from Canada entering Michigan
PORT HURON, Mich. More than a half-ton of marijuana has been found in a commercial truck attempting to cross into Michigan from Canada via the Blue Water Bridge. The trucks records indicated it was hauling office furniture to various locations in Michigan, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Officers found more than 1,114 pounds (505 kilograms) of marijuana in vacuum-sealed packages concealed in cardboard boxes. Authorities have seized more than 4,400 pounds (1,995 kilograms) of marijuana at ports of entry across Michigan since March. The Blue Water Bridge spans the St. Clair River and connects Port Huron, Michigan, to Sarnia, Ontario.
Protesters hit with gas as locals demand feds leave Portland
Federal officers deployed tear gas and fired less-lethal rounds into a crowd of protesters late Thursday. The actions came just hours after the head of the Department of Homeland Security called the protesters violent anarchists. Federal agents, some wearing camouflage and some wearing dark Homeland Security uniforms, used tear gas at least twice to break up crowds late Friday night, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported. Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum said Friday night she was also suing Homeland Security and the Marshals Service. Federal officers deployed tear gas again just before midnight after a few protesters placed dismantled fencing in front of plywood doors covering the entrance of the federal courthouse.