Bill Brooks, southwest border field branch chief for Customs and Border Protection in Washington, D.C. stated, “We are refining the way we operate by managing risk.” According to an article appearing on the KRGV.com website on October 21, 2011, Brooks explained how agents will only be at commercial transportation hubs if intelligence justifies the operations.
Stated plainly, Border Patrol managers are increasing the layers of bureaucracy and making it as difficult as possible for Border Patrol agents to conduct their core duties. The only risks being managed by this move are too many apprehensions, negative media attention and complaints generated by immigrant rights groups.
Interior patrol operations, farm and ranch checks, and other enforcement operations met a similar fate nearly ten years ago when the Border Patrol implemented the same intelligence-based philosophy. Due to the unnecessary bureaucratic red tape, it is next to impossible to get an operation in those areas approved; therefore, apprehensions in those areas also decreased. By decreasing apprehensions, Border Patrol management and the Administration can make false claims regarding the security of our borders. Further, the lack of apprehensions makes it easier for the Administration to promote some form of amnesty.
Border Patrol agents have been extremely effective in arresting illegal immigrants, drug smugglers, and those violating a myriad of laws by conducting transportation checks. Millions of illegal aliens are currently residing in the United States and they are utilizing transportation systems to travel throughout the country. This change in policy would give criminals a free pass to exploit these transit systems. A decade ago nineteen illegal aliens overstayed visas and showed the vulnerability of our transportation system, which resulted in nearly 3,000 Americans losing their lives. This lesson must be lost on those running the Border Patrol in Washington.
February 3, 2012 – On February 2, 2012, Attorney General Eric Holder appeared and gave testimony before the House Oversight Committee regarding the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and the ill conceived Operation Fast and Furious. Several times during his testimony he was asked questions to which he would give dismissive answers or attribute the questions to political pandering or election year charades. This was nothing new for a man who has refused to accept responsibility for this fiasco and has not disciplined any of the high-ranking officials who were involved with the approval of this operation. Instead, the ATF retaliated against whistleblowers that helped expose the dangerous operation.
Finally, when Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle (R-NY) began her questioning of Holder, she asked the question that this organization has been asking for over a year. Buerkle asked, "How many more Border Patrol agents would have had to die for you to take responsibility?" Holder could only respond by attempting to paint the question as one that shouldn't be asked stating, "I mean, really, as a member of Congress, is that the way you want to be seen, or the way you want to be known?"
March 8, 2011 – The National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) is pleased to announce the election of George E. McCubbin III as its President. During its biennial convention, over 120 delegates voted unanimously to install McCubbin into its top leadership position. McCubbin brings over 25 years of Border Patrol experience to the position, along with the respect of frontline Border Patrol agents.
The newly elected NBPC Executive Committee is:
President - George E. McCubbin III
Executive Vice President - Chris Bauder
Vice President West - Shawn Moran
Vice President South - Paul Perez
Vice President East - Eric Sparkman
Vice President North - Steve Malpezzi
Vice President At Large - Brandon Judd
Vice President At Large - James Stack
Secretary/Treasurer - Joseph Bradley
Effective immediately all media inquiries should be directed to Vice President Shawn Moran.
On April 11, 2011, an article appeared in the Yuma Sun about Michael Atondo, who was recently arrested in Yuma, Arizona. In the article, the reporter said Atondo "is also being represented by an attorney from the Border Patrol Union." As a result, the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), the union for all non-supervisory Border Patrol agents and support personnel assigned to the U.S. Border Patrol, issues the following statement.
One of the many benefits provided by the NBPC is coverage under the Peace Officers Research Association of California (PORAC) Legal Defense Fund (LDF) . Determination for coverage under the LDF is made by the Plan Administrator, not the NBPC. In the instant matter against Atondo, LDF determined additional information was needed to make a determination on coverage. This step is to ensure that our members receive a fair and unbiased determination of their case. Nevertheless, upon obtaining and reviewing all of the necessary information, LDF terminated representation. As a result, Atondo will not be represented by an attorney from the NBPC or PORAC LDF in future proceedings.
The NBPC is proud of the two agents who arrived on scene and whose quick thinking and actions led to the arrest of Atondo. Unfortunately, those two agents had to face the unthinkable that day and deal with the fallout from directives that occurred under the former Border Patrol chief and current Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Deputy Commissioner David Aguilar.
As was reported by the NBPC in the past, Aguilar placed a priority on quantity instead of quality with respect to new hires. While some in Congress believe polygraph exams are the solution, the NBPC believes the focus should not be entirely on new hires. Instead, Congress should focus on the illogical and immoderate changes the Border Patrol made to recruiting, hiring, and training of new hires under the direction of Aguilar.
Rather than waste millions of dollars on polygraphs, Congress should require the Border Patrol to conduct extensive background checks on anyone hired while Aguilar was the chief. Congress should order a review of the recruiting practices of the Border Patrol during the same time. Finally, Congress should demand the Border Patrol lengthen the academy and provide better training over a longer period of time to provide ample opportunity for: trainees to retain core components of the job, and academy instructors to prepare trainees for the field and identify trainees who are not suitable for law enforcement.