Border agents admit that since Biden the number of migrants has ‘gone from a trickle to a torrent’

It began with the flicker of a flashlight, muffled voices and the gentle splash of paddles carrying softly across the stillness of the Rio Grande Valley.

As the silhouette drew closer to the shore we could suddenly see the bow of a small boat and the faces of women and children peering back at us though the gloom.

Moments later the raft reached the riverbank and the dozen or so occupants began clambering on to U.S. soil with dreams of starting a new life in Joe Biden‘s America.

As they stumbled around in the darkness a young woman tripped and fell into the water before scrambling back up the bank, caked in mud.

The children sobbed loudly as a menacing figure sat at the back of the raft barking at them to hurry up so he could head back to Mexico.

‘Inmigracion?’ growled the heavily-tattooed trafficker, turning his attention to us. He seemed to relax when we told him we were ‘periodistas’ (journalists).

DailyMail.com visited the U.S. - Mexico border in Roma, Texas where boatloads of migrants were seen crossing into the U.S.

DailyMail.com visited the U.S. - Mexico border in Roma, Texas where boatloads of migrants were seen crossing into the U.S.

 DailyMail.com visited the U.S. – Mexico border in Roma, Texas where boatloads of migrants were seen crossing into the U.S.

As the night drew on, this brief, chaotic encounter was repeated again and again as scores of migrants crossed one of the narrowest sections of the Rio Grande with virtual impunity

As the night drew on, this brief, chaotic encounter was repeated again and again as scores of migrants crossed one of the narrowest sections of the Rio Grande with virtual impunity

As the night drew on, this brief, chaotic encounter was repeated again and again as scores of migrants crossed one of the narrowest sections of the Rio Grande with virtual impunity

Over a two-hour period a three-man trafficking crew made five drop-offs, cramming as many as ten people into a boat designed for four

Over a two-hour period a three-man trafficking crew made five drop-offs, cramming as many as ten people into a boat designed for four

Over a two-hour period a three-man trafficking crew made five drop-offs, cramming as many as ten people into a boat designed for four

During one landing a Border Patrol agent walked to the water's edge to help a dad struggling to help his wife and ten-month-old son climb out of the boat

During one landing a Border Patrol agent walked to the water's edge to help a dad struggling to help his wife and ten-month-old son climb out of the boat

During one landing a Border Patrol agent walked to the water’s edge to help a dad struggling to help his wife and ten-month-old son climb out of the boat

As they stumbled around in the darkness a young woman tripped and fell into the water before scrambling back up the bank, caked in mud

As they stumbled around in the darkness a young woman tripped and fell into the water before scrambling back up the bank, caked in mud

As they stumbled around in the darkness a young woman tripped and fell into the water before scrambling back up the bank, caked in mud

Of the 96 newcomers the coyotes dumped onto a slippery riverbank in Roma, an hour's drive west of McAllen, 13 were unaccompanied children, including sisters aged five and 12

Of the 96 newcomers the coyotes dumped onto a slippery riverbank in Roma, an hour's drive west of McAllen, 13 were unaccompanied children, including sisters aged five and 12

Of the 96 newcomers the coyotes dumped onto a slippery riverbank in Roma, an hour’s drive west of McAllen, 13 were unaccompanied children, including sisters aged five and 12

Under longstanding safety protocols, Border Patrol never chase smugglers into the water in case a boat capsizes or a passenger falls overboard. 'If we went after the coyotes they could order everyone out of the boat and have them swim or wade the rest of the way. And then we are looking at a rescue scenario or worse. It's just too dangerous,' our source said

Under longstanding safety protocols, Border Patrol never chase smugglers into the water in case a boat capsizes or a passenger falls overboard. 'If we went after the coyotes they could order everyone out of the boat and have them swim or wade the rest of the way. And then we are looking at a rescue scenario or worse. It's just too dangerous,' our source said

Under longstanding safety protocols, Border Patrol never chase smugglers into the water in case a boat capsizes or a passenger falls overboard. ‘If we went after the coyotes they could order everyone out of the boat and have them swim or wade the rest of the way. And then we are looking at a rescue scenario or worse. It’s just too dangerous,’ our source said

As the night drew on, this brief, chaotic encounter was repeated again and again as scores of migrants crossed one of the narrowest sections of the Rio Grande with virtual impunity.

Over a two-hour period we watched in disbelief as the three-man trafficking crew made five drop-offs, cramming as many as ten people into a boat designed for four.

Of the 96 newcomers they dumped onto a slippery riverbank in Roma, an hour’s drive west of McAllen, 13 were unaccompanied children, including sisters aged five and 12.

 Under former President Donald Trump’s ‘Remain in Mexico’ crackdown all of these people would have faced being sent straight back across the border to wait for their asylum cases to be decided.

But their prospects are much brighter after the Biden administration scrapped the policy within days of taking office.

Under Biden’s revisions, single men and women will still be sent back but families with young children will be taken to a Border Patrol facility, processed and released with an I-862 form – a notice to appear before an immigration court at a later date.

Unoccupied minors, meanwhile, are being housed at a newly-opened Border Patrol facility 60 miles east in Donna, Texas.

DailyMail.com visited the remote border outpost to see for ourselves whether the surge in illegal crossings was merely a ‘challenge’ – as President Biden would have us believe – or a full-blown immigration crisis.

Democrats have claimed they inherited a ‘broken system’ while Republicans say the Biden administration sparked chaos at the southern border by ripping up Trump’s hardline policies.

But as a well-placed Border Patrol source told us under condition of anonymity: ‘The cartels don’t know or care what the actual policies or politics are.

‘They just tell the migrants that Biden will let them stay and the migrants believe it because that’s the rhetoric he used on the campaign trail.

‘The numbers have exploded since he took office. It went from a trickle to a torrent.’ 

According to Customs and Border Protection, the number of migrant apprehensions reached 78,323 in the month of January 2021 alone – double the amount from January 2020. 

And in February 2021, CBP encountered 100,441 migrants attempting to enter the U.S. along the Southwest border – a 28% increase over January 2021.

A  well-placed Border Patrol source told us under condition of anonymity: 'The cartels don't know or care what the actual policies or politics are The numbers have exploded since he took office. It went from a trickle to a torrent'

A  well-placed Border Patrol source told us under condition of anonymity: 'The cartels don't know or care what the actual policies or politics are The numbers have exploded since he took office. It went from a trickle to a torrent'

A  well-placed Border Patrol source told us under condition of anonymity: ‘The cartels don’t know or care what the actual policies or politics are The numbers have exploded since he took office. It went from a trickle to a torrent’

The children sobbed loudly as a menacing figure sat at the back of the raft barking at them to hurry up so he could head back to Mexico

The children sobbed loudly as a menacing figure sat at the back of the raft barking at them to hurry up so he could head back to Mexico

The children sobbed loudly as a menacing figure sat at the back of the raft barking at them to hurry up so he could head back to Mexico

The coyotes took to the water on a $240 Seahawk 4 inflatable raft as soon as the sun dipped behind the horizon. The crossing took less than five minutes in each direction and agents were watching their every move though thermal imaging cameras

The coyotes took to the water on a $240 Seahawk 4 inflatable raft as soon as the sun dipped behind the horizon. The crossing took less than five minutes in each direction and agents were watching their every move though thermal imaging cameras

The coyotes took to the water on a $240 Seahawk 4 inflatable raft as soon as the sun dipped behind the horizon. The crossing took less than five minutes in each direction and agents were watching their every move though thermal imaging cameras

As DailyMail.com arrived at a notorious trafficking hotspot we passed a half dozen US Customs and Border Protection vehicles perched on lookouts and hillsides as well as a National Guard patrol in an armored Humvee

As DailyMail.com arrived at a notorious trafficking hotspot we passed a half dozen US Customs and Border Protection vehicles perched on lookouts and hillsides as well as a National Guard patrol in an armored Humvee

As DailyMail.com arrived at a notorious trafficking hotspot we passed a half dozen US Customs and Border Protection vehicles perched on lookouts and hillsides as well as a National Guard patrol in an armored Humvee

As the migrants streamed ashore, their clothes caked in dust and mud, they tore off colored wristbands given to them by the traffickers as a way to distinguish between different groups

As the migrants streamed ashore, their clothes caked in dust and mud, they tore off colored wristbands given to them by the traffickers as a way to distinguish between different groups

As the migrants streamed ashore, their clothes caked in dust and mud, they tore off colored wristbands given to them by the traffickers as a way to distinguish between different groups

A large group of migrants from Central America is gathered after being apprehended by Border Patrol in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12

A large group of migrants from Central America is gathered after being apprehended by Border Patrol in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12

A large group of migrants from Central America is gathered after being apprehended by Border Patrol in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12

The migrants are classified, their property is checked and depending on their situation either transported to a processing center or returned to Mexico

The migrants are classified, their property is checked and depending on their situation either transported to a processing center or returned to Mexico

The migrants are classified, their property is checked and depending on their situation either transported to a processing center or returned to Mexico

Democrats have claimed they inherited a ‘broken system’ while Republicans say the Biden administration sparked chaos at the southern border by ripping up Trump’s hardline policies

Under Biden's revisions, single men and women will still be sent back but families with young children will be taken to a Border Patrol facility, processed and released with an I-862 form – a notice to appear before an immigration court at a later date

Under Biden's revisions, single men and women will still be sent back but families with young children will be taken to a Border Patrol facility, processed and released with an I-862 form – a notice to appear before an immigration court at a later date

Under Biden’s revisions, single men and women will still be sent back but families with young children will be taken to a Border Patrol facility, processed and released with an I-862 form – a notice to appear before an immigration court at a later date

'We are at the point now where they are basically just handing them straight over to us,' a border source said of the coyotes. 'They know that while we are inundated with the family units they can run the other groups - single men, people with criminal records, drug smugglers - through the quieter areas undetected'

'We are at the point now where they are basically just handing them straight over to us,' a border source said of the coyotes. 'They know that while we are inundated with the family units they can run the other groups - single men, people with criminal records, drug smugglers - through the quieter areas undetected'

‘We are at the point now where they are basically just handing them straight over to us,’ a border source said of the coyotes. ‘They know that while we are inundated with the family units they can run the other groups – single men, people with criminal records, drug smugglers – through the quieter areas undetected’

Before the migrants could get lost or come to any harm, agents led them to a clearing where they handed out face masks and started the laborious process of inspecting their papers and taking biometric data

Before the migrants could get lost or come to any harm, agents led them to a clearing where they handed out face masks and started the laborious process of inspecting their papers and taking biometric data

Before the migrants could get lost or come to any harm, agents led them to a clearing where they handed out face masks and started the laborious process of inspecting their papers and taking biometric data

The Rio Grande narrows to a little over 100 yards wide in Roma, a city of 10,000 people connected via a bridge border crossing to Cuidad Miguel Aleman, which is three times its size and plagued by shootouts and drug violence.

On the Mexican side the Gulf Cartel battles its archrival, Los Zetas, for control of the lucrative smuggling routes, racking up million-dollar profits while charging Central American migrants fleeing persecution and poverty up to $4,000 to ferry them to the US.

As we arrived at a notorious trafficking hotspot on Saturday evening we passed a half dozen US Customs and Border Protection vehicles perched on lookouts and hillsides as well as a National Guard patrol in an armored Humvee.

But none of that deterred the coyotes who took to the water on a $240 Seahawk 4 inflatable raft as soon as the sun dipped behind the horizon.

The crossing took less than five minutes in each direction and agents were watching their every move though thermal imaging cameras.

Married couple Jordi Marin and Marcela Glaica from Guatemala and her son crossed the border illegally in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12. She said they are on their way to New York City

Married couple Jordi Marin and Marcela Glaica from Guatemala and her son crossed the border illegally in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12. She said they are on their way to New York City

Married couple Jordi Marin and Marcela Glaica from Guatemala and her son crossed the border illegally in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12. She said they are on their way to New York City

The coyotes seized their chance to unload 96 migrants before vanishing into the night. A family from Guatemala is checked by a Border Patrol agent

The coyotes seized their chance to unload 96 migrants before vanishing into the night. A family from Guatemala is checked by a Border Patrol agent

The coyotes seized their chance to unload 96 migrants before vanishing into the night. A family from Guatemala is checked by a Border Patrol agent 

A group of migrants are seen apprehended near the border wall in Penitas, Texas. Our Border Patrol source predicts these astonishing scenes will become ever more commonplace unless Biden does the politically unthinkable and brings back Trump-era immigration policies

A group of migrants are seen apprehended near the border wall in Penitas, Texas. Our Border Patrol source predicts these astonishing scenes will become ever more commonplace unless Biden does the politically unthinkable and brings back Trump-era immigration policies

A group of migrants are seen apprehended near the border wall in Penitas, Texas. Our Border Patrol source predicts these astonishing scenes will become ever more commonplace unless Biden does the politically unthinkable and brings back Trump-era immigration policies

On Thursday night 600 migrants had been taken into custody at a Border Patrol station during an eight-hour shift. A typical figure was about 40

On Thursday night 600 migrants had been taken into custody at a Border Patrol station during an eight-hour shift. A typical figure was about 40

On Thursday night 600 migrants had been taken into custody at a Border Patrol station during an eight-hour shift. A typical figure was about 40

'The cartels are making more from people trafficking than the entire annual budget of US Customs and Border Protection,' our source said. 'Pouring more resources into it won't change anything - only a change in policy can stop this'

'The cartels are making more from people trafficking than the entire annual budget of US Customs and Border Protection,' our source said. 'Pouring more resources into it won't change anything - only a change in policy can stop this'

‘The cartels are making more from people trafficking than the entire annual budget of US Customs and Border Protection,’ our source said. ‘Pouring more resources into it won’t change anything – only a change in policy can stop this’

But, as our source explained, under longstanding safety protocols they never chase smugglers into the water in case a boat capsizes or a passenger falls overboard.

‘If we went after the coyotes they could order everyone out of the boat and have them swim or wade the rest of the way. And then we are looking at a rescue scenario or worse. It’s just too dangerous,’ he said.

‘We are at the point now where they are basically just handing them straight over to us.

‘They know that while we are inundated with the family units they can run the other groups – single men, people with criminal records, drug smugglers – through the quieter areas undetected.’

The coyotes seized their chance to unload 96 migrants before vanishing into the night.

During one landing a Border Patrol agent walked to the water’s edge to help a dad struggling to help his wife and ten-month-old son climb out of the boat.

The traffickers barely flinched – one even calling out ‘thank you officer’ in broken English.

In a further brazen twist, one of the shirtless crew members even decided to turn the tables on the media by filming us on his phone.

As the migrants streamed ashore, their clothes caked in dust and mud, they tore off colored wristbands given to them by the traffickers as a way to distinguish between different groups.

A mother who crossed with her son received a Notice To Appear (NTA) from the Department of Homeland Security after being apprehended by U.S Border Patrol

A mother who crossed with her son received a Notice To Appear (NTA) from the Department of Homeland Security after being apprehended by U.S Border Patrol

A mother who crossed with her son received a Notice To Appear (NTA) from the Department of Homeland Security after being apprehended by U.S Border Patrol

Elsa and her son Anderson, from Honduras, are allowed to stay at the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley shelter in McAllen, Texas. They crossed the border near Hidalgo, Texas

Elsa and her son Anderson, from Honduras, are allowed to stay at the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley shelter in McAllen, Texas. They crossed the border near Hidalgo, Texas

Elsa and her son Anderson, from Honduras, are allowed to stay at the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley shelter in McAllen, Texas. They crossed the border near Hidalgo, Texas

Families are seen staying at The Catholic Charities in McAllen. Unoccupied minors, meanwhile, are being housed at a newly-opened Border Patrol facility 60 miles east in Donna, Texas

Families are seen staying at The Catholic Charities in McAllen. Unoccupied minors, meanwhile, are being housed at a newly-opened Border Patrol facility 60 miles east in Donna, Texas

Families are seen staying at The Catholic Charities in McAllen. Unoccupied minors, meanwhile, are being housed at a newly-opened Border Patrol facility 60 miles east in Donna, Texas

The center provides a place for the countless men, women, children, and infant refugees to rest, have a warm meal, a shower, and change into clean clothing as well as receive medicine and other supplies, before continuing onto their journey

The center provides a place for the countless men, women, children, and infant refugees to rest, have a warm meal, a shower, and change into clean clothing as well as receive medicine and other supplies, before continuing onto their journey

The center provides a place for the countless men, women, children, and infant refugees to rest, have a warm meal, a shower, and change into clean clothing as well as receive medicine and other supplies, before continuing onto their journey

The Catholic Charities in the Rio Grande Valley, along with help from the Sacred Heart Church and the City of McAllen offer emergency assistance, relief and housing to immigrants crossing the boarder

The Catholic Charities in the Rio Grande Valley, along with help from the Sacred Heart Church and the City of McAllen offer emergency assistance, relief and housing to immigrants crossing the boarder

 The Catholic Charities in the Rio Grande Valley, along with help from the Sacred Heart Church and the City of McAllen offer emergency assistance, relief and housing to immigrants crossing the boarder

A Covid-19 Test Site has been set up by the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley with the help of the City of McAllen to insure migrants are not infected with the virus before they enter the shelter or get on a Greyhound Bus

A Covid-19 Test Site has been set up by the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley with the help of the City of McAllen to insure migrants are not infected with the virus before they enter the shelter or get on a Greyhound Bus

A Covid-19 Test Site has been set up by the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley with the help of the City of McAllen to insure migrants are not infected with the virus before they enter the shelter or get on a Greyhound Bus

If found to be positive they are placed in a quarantine hotel and tested everyday until they test negative. After receiving a negative test result, migrants are escorted to the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley Shelter

If found to be positive they are placed in a quarantine hotel and tested everyday until they test negative. After receiving a negative test result, migrants are escorted to the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley Shelter

If found to be positive they are placed in a quarantine hotel and tested everyday until they test negative. After receiving a negative test result, migrants are escorted to the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley Shelter

'My neighbor would find their lifejackets. The dogs would bark but they never tried to break in,' said Madeline Garza, 76, a retired teacher

'My neighbor would find their lifejackets. The dogs would bark but they never tried to break in,' said Madeline Garza, 76, a retired teacher

‘My neighbor would find their lifejackets. The dogs would bark but they never tried to break in,’ said Madeline Garza, 76, a retired teacher

They told us they were from Peru, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and were happy to be in America before traipsing into the woods without a clue where they were going.

‘We are here because I can get a good job and my children can have a better life,’ said Christian Mejia, 32, who crossed the border with his wife and daughters aged five and eight.

‘The trip was scary and agonizing but we had faith in God.’

Before the migrants could get lost or come to any harm, agents led them to a clearing where they handed out face masks and started the laborious process of inspecting their papers and taking biometric data.

Under Biden’s revisions, single men and women will still be sent back but families with young children will be taken to a Border Patrol facility, processed and released with an I-862 form – a notice to appear before an immigration court at a later date.

Unoccupied minors, meanwhile, are being housed at a newly-opened Border Patrol facility 60 miles east in Donna, Texas.

 As of last Thursday the facility, originally designed for 250 children, was housing around 1,000, many of whom were stuck there for longer than the legal limit of 72 hours as authorities raced to trace their US relations.

Unaccompanied minors are separated from the large group of migrants and taken to a special facility after illegally crossing into the U.S. in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12

Unaccompanied minors are separated from the large group of migrants and taken to a special facility after illegally crossing into the U.S. in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12

Unaccompanied minors are separated from the large group of migrants and taken to a special facility after illegally crossing into the U.S. in Penitas, Texas on Friday, March 12

United States Border Patrol are seen monitoring the Rio Grande River by boat in Penitas, Texas

United States Border Patrol are seen monitoring the Rio Grande River by boat in Penitas, Texas

United States Border Patrol are seen monitoring the Rio Grande River by boat in Penitas, Texas

A man and two boys are seen just south of the border wall in Penitas. As of last Thursday the facility, originally designed for 250 children, was housing around 1,000, many of whom were stuck there for longer than the legal limit of 72 hours as authorities raced to trace their US relations

A man and two boys are seen just south of the border wall in Penitas. As of last Thursday the facility, originally designed for 250 children, was housing around 1,000, many of whom were stuck there for longer than the legal limit of 72 hours as authorities raced to trace their US relations

A man and two boys are seen just south of the border wall in Penitas. As of last Thursday the facility, originally designed for 250 children, was housing around 1,000, many of whom were stuck there for longer than the legal limit of 72 hours as authorities raced to trace their US relations

The migrants are classified, their property is checked and depending on their situation either transported to a processing center or returned to Mexico to begin their journey home

The migrants are classified, their property is checked and depending on their situation either transported to a processing center or returned to Mexico to begin their journey home

The migrants are classified, their property is checked and depending on their situation either transported to a processing center or returned to Mexico to begin their journey home 

A Border Patrol truck is seen just south of the border wall in Penitas, Texas

A Border Patrol truck is seen just south of the border wall in Penitas, Texas

A Border Patrol truck is seen just south of the border wall in Penitas, Texas 

 

The Department of Homeland Security on Saturday ordered the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) – an agency more accustomed to battling natural disasters – to ‘help receive, shelter and transport children’ for the next 90 days.

Our visit to Roma came after stops at a series of dusty border towns along the Rio Grande Valley which spans the far southernmost tip of Texas.

In Penitas we peered through the Obama-era metal fencing and spotted three migrants who ran away when they saw us.

We learned there that the previous night 600 migrants had been taken into custody at a Border Patrol station during an eight-hour shift. A typical figure was about 40.

A little later we came across 30 migrants, mainly women and young children, lined up by the side of the road waiting to board a chartered bus to a processing center.

Of those, 12 were unaccompanied minors. They were put on a different vehicle to the rest of their group and were likely headed to the facility in Donna.

In La Joya locals said crowds of migrants would wander along the street as if they were leaving a football game.

And in Los Ebanos, a tiny community where homes back directly on to the Rio Grande, residents said that in years gone by migrants would clamber up the riverbank and wander through their yards.

One of the shirtless crew members even decided to turn the tables on the media by filming us on his phone

One of the shirtless crew members even decided to turn the tables on the media by filming us on his phone

One of the shirtless crew members even decided to turn the tables on the media by filming us on his phone

In La Joya locals said crowds of migrants would wander along the street as if they were leaving a football game

In La Joya locals said crowds of migrants would wander along the street as if they were leaving a football game

In La Joya locals said crowds of migrants would wander along the street as if they were leaving a football game

In Los Ebanos, a tiny community where homes back directly on to the Rio Grande, residents said that in years gone by migrants would clamber up the riverbank and wander through their yards

In Los Ebanos, a tiny community where homes back directly on to the Rio Grande, residents said that in years gone by migrants would clamber up the riverbank and wander through their yards

In Los Ebanos, a tiny community where homes back directly on to the Rio Grande, residents said that in years gone by migrants would clamber up the riverbank and wander through their yards

The migrants said they were from Peru, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and happy to be in America. 'We are here because I can get a good job and my children can have a better life,' said one father who crossed the border with his wife and daughters aged five and eight

The migrants said they were from Peru, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and happy to be in America. 'We are here because I can get a good job and my children can have a better life,' said one father who crossed the border with his wife and daughters aged five and eight

The migrants said they were from Peru, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and happy to be in America. ‘We are here because I can get a good job and my children can have a better life,’ said one father who crossed the border with his wife and daughters aged five and eight

‘My neighbor would find their lifejackets. The dogs would bark but they never tried to break in,’ said Madeline Garza, 76, a retired teacher.

‘Now we have more Border agents here than ever before and I feel very protected. I feel sorry for these people but there’s always one rotten apple.’

Our Border Patrol source predicts these astonishing scenes will become ever more commonplace unless Biden does the politically unthinkable and brings back Trump-era immigration policies.

‘The cartels are making more from people trafficking than the entire annual budget of US Customs and Border Protection.

‘Pouring more resources into it won’t change anything – only a change in policy can stop this,’ he told DailyMail.com.

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