Texas Insider Report: WASHINGTON, DC – (LAREDO, Texas)—Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28) has issued the following statement regarding the release of Central American immigrants in Laredo by the Department of Homeland Security with a Notice to Appear before an immigration judge.
“The Department of Homeland Security is releasing immigrants, mostly from Central America, in the Laredo area where they are free to go with relatives or sponsor organizations while they are given a Notice to Appear for an asylum hearing before an immigration judge on a certain date. These immigrants were previously processed to be deported before being reprocessed with a Notice to Appear and therefore released on their own recognizance.
“Our law enforcement on the border have a tremendous job at hand. And while we are speaking about Central American immigrants today, we are expecting tens of thousands of more immigrants from other parts of the world in the next few months.
“I recently spoke with Roman Macaya, Costa Rican Ambassador to the United States, regarding information that about 40,000 migrants from Haiti, as well as Africa, Asia and the Middle East, will be on their way to the United States southern border via Central America and Mexico.
“I continue to stress the need to be more proactive and work with our neighbors in both Mexico and Central America to curb these huge waves of illegal immigration to the United States. Our taxpayer dollars, and more importantly, our border communities, are bearing the burden of providing emergency shelter and food for many of these immigrants who have been coming to the border and pleading asylum in record numbers.
“This past year, Congress provided $750 million in aid for Central America specifically to help deter illegal immigration to the United States. Furthermore, I’m working with my colleagues to provide our justice system with the immigration judges and necessary infrastructure to cut down on the backlog of immigration cases. In FY16, we were able to provide the U.S. Department of Justice with 55 new immigration judges and had a deal worked out in the FY17 House Appropriations Act to provide 25 more. I will continue to work with my colleagues to find solutions to make changes to these processes at the border.”