Texas: State Blocks 26k Smuggling Attempts Since March Last Year – Gov. Abbott

The Texas National Guard received a tweet of gratitude from Texas Governor Greg Abbot for its efforts to block over 20,000 smuggling attempts between Mexico and the United States. 

“The Texas National Guard has blocked over 26,000 potential smuggling events since March 2021. The Lone Star State continues to do more than any state in HISTORY to secure our border,” Abbot wrote on his official Twitter account.

Abbot was referring to Operation Lone Star, launched in March 2021 in response to “a rise in illegal immigration,” according to Texas Indigent Defense Commission.

Fox News reported that the operation uses the Texas Department of Public Safety, or DPS, troopers and members of the Texas National Guard, who assist in policing gaps along the border that the United States shares with Mexico. Customs and Border Patrol cannot attend.

Aftermath of Operation Lone Star

Abbott declared a disaster in 48 counties, most of which are border counties, two months after Operation Lone Star began.

To stop criminal activity along the border, including criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking, the declaration mandated the Department of Public Safety to use all available resources to enforce all relevant federal and state laws. It also instructed the department to support Texas counties’ efforts to deal with these criminal activities.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) facilities were made available for Operation Lone Star arrestees to be held in the next month by the governor.

Since Operation Lone Star began, the state’s initiative has resulted in more than 321,000 migrant arrests, more than 21,400 criminal arrests, and more than 18,900 felony charges. During this border campaign, DPS has removed approximately 350 million fatal doses of fentanyl from circulation, as per the Office of the Texas Governor.

In April, Texas bused about 8,300 migrants to the nation’s capital, more than 3,500 to New York City since August 5, and more than 1,100 to Chicago. Its overburdened border communities are receiving much-needed help from the mission.