New route for illegal entry into the United States – Vermont

By (The Center Square)

As record numbers of foreign nationals continue to enter the United States through the southern border each month, one of the smallest states in terms of geography and population is also affected by the surge: Vermont.

Mexican cartels are now increasingly transporting foreign nationals arriving in Mexico from around the world to Quebec from Mexico City, Border Patrol and law enforcement officers told The Center Square. Cartel scouts help them illegally travel from Canada to northern states, they said. Vermont, which is experiencing record illegal entries, has a population of approximately 645,545 people.

More than 306,000 foreign nationals — nearly half of Vermont’s population — were apprehended or evaded capture by law enforcement at the southern border in November, according to preliminary Customs and Protection data. American borders. Data obtained by La Place du Centre. They mainly cross into Texas.

As Texas Border Patrol agents are aided by agents from the State Department of Public Safety and local law enforcement working through Governor Greg Abbott’s Border Security Mission, Operation Lone Star, Vermont has no such border security operation.

But Vermont, which falls under the Swanton Branch of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, saw a 676% increase in arrests of illegal foreign nationals in October compared to a year ago, according to Border Patrol data.

Swanton Area Chief Border Patrol Officer Robert Garcia said officers apprehended 334 people from 19 countries in October and “the upward trend continues”.

The industry relies on tips from Vermont residents who report suspicious activity, Garcia said. On Tuesday, he thanked North Country residents for lending their “eyes” to Border Patrol agents by making 112 reports of suspicious activity in November. He said their calls helped officers make 139 arrests of illegal border crossers. Of Vermont residents, he said, “YOUR call can be the one that helps keep us all safe.”

Garcia also encourages residents to call 1-800-689-3362 to report any suspicious border-related activity.

Two recent examples show how Vermont residents are helping BP agents.

On November 18, a report from a concerned citizen led to the arrest of five people who entered the United States illegally near Champlain, New York. Records revealed that one of them, a Romanian citizen, had an extraditable warrant for his arrest from Wisconsin for failure to appear for identity theft.

On November 14, BP officers rescued illegal aliens in freezing temperatures after receiving a 911 call. They encountered six people near Troy, Vermont. Four were children under 5 years old. Although they were able to get them to safety, Swanton BP Sector said in a statement, “This is NOT a safe or acceptable way to enter the United States.”

But it’s not just Vermont residents helping Swanton BP agents. The Canadian Mounted Police are also.

On the night of October 27, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police advised Swanton BP officers that two people had illegally entered the United States from a remote, rural area of ​​the town of Highgate Center, Vermont. A BP officer responded and observed a driver of a blue Hyundai sedan with out-of-state registration come to a stop at an intersection about half a mile south of the international border. The officer then saw two people exit a ditch near the intersection and enter the sedan. After stopping the vehicle and performing a driver and passenger records check, the officer learned that all three were Colombian citizens who had previously been arrested for illegally entering the United States.

This time the driver, Sebastian Buitrago-Valero, 23, a Colombian national with a Chicago address, was arrested and charged with illegally transporting individuals he knew had entered the United States illegally. On Nov. 10, he was indicted by a federal grand jury, the U.S. District Attorney for Vermont recently announced.

Buitrago-Valero was previously arrested for entering the United States illegally last November. However, under Biden administration policies, he was released to the United States pending immigration court proceedings, the U.S. Attorney’s Office notes.

Its passengers re-entered the United States illegally after being arrested for illegally entering the United States earlier in 2022.

Of CBP’s 20 areas nationwide, Swanton encompasses approximately 24,000 square miles and spans three states. It includes all of Vermont, six New York counties (Clinton, Essex, Franklin, St. Lawrence, Hamilton, and Herkimer), and three New Hampshire counties (Coos, Grafton, and Carroll).

It is the first international land border east of the Great Lakes and is adjacent to the Canadian provinces of Quebec and Ontario. It includes 295 miles of international border, including 203 miles of land border and 92 miles of maritime border, mainly along the St. Lawrence River.

To the west is the Buffalo area, which encompasses most of New York and four other states. To the east is the Houlton area, which encompasses Maine.

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