I thought "catch and release" was a phrase used solely by fishermen. Apparently, the border patrol has adopted this practice also. Since the
beginning of this year, the border patrol in Texas has released more than 15,000 OTMs (other-than-Mexican). When they are released, they are told to
appear in court on a later date. More than 70% NEVER make their court appearance.
“When an illegal immigrant crosses the border, and is captured, you’d think we would hold them until they are deported,” said Ortiz. “Turns
out that is not the case. DHS lacks the bed space to accommodate them, so they are releasing them into the communities along the border. While there
are dozens of problems for border communities related to released migrants who seek asylum or just greater economic opportunity, it is now an urgent
national security matter because law enforcement officers around South Texas have come to me to tell me of their fears that we are releasing - on
their own recognizance - people who could be associated with al Queda who are then able to proceed legally to join cells already in the United
“While the very least we can do now is close the barn door after the cows are out, it remains that this policy has the potential of continuing to
endanger the very homeland security in which we all want, and need, to have confidence,” Ortiz said. “The first step is a sudden reversal of this
policy, followed by tracking down those who have escaped justice by not returning for a scheduled hearing, then finally an analysis of the damage that
may have been done to our national security since these releases have occurred.”
Ortiz and Bonilla told the President, DHS Secretary Ridge, Attorney General John Ashcroft (which oversees some of the matters related to immigration
judges), and Secretary of State Colin Powell that they understood the systemic, complex nature of the problem. They asked each agency to work together
to rapidly find solutions to this enormous national security concern.
The entire text of the letter follows:
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
Now I'm no security genius, but I would MUCH prefer the release of the Mexicans as opposed to the OTMs. Of course, this is all being blamed on
"lack of bedding" which I interpret as a "lack of importance".
Our extensive borders and lack of manpower make our border secuirty a next-to-impossible feat. With the government shunning American border patrol
volunteers, this entire scenario stinks of immenent disaster...
I strongly suggest reading the letter in its entirety...
[edit on 31-5-2005 by BadMojo]