Customs and Border Protection (CBP) flagged 74,904 illegal migrants nationwide for potentially posing risks to national security between October 2022 and August, according to CBP data obtained exclusively by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Certain illegal migrants are deemed to be “special interest aliens” because they may have travel patterns that “possibly have a nexus to terrorism” or may come from countries with such ties, according to a 2019 Department of Homeland Security (DHS) fact sheet. Border Patrol agents encountered 25,627 “special interest” illegal migrants in fiscal year 2022, compared to 3,675 encounters in fiscal year 2021, according to internal agency data previously obtained by the DCNF; however, this data doesn’t account for all CBP encounters of special interest aliens.
“Generally, an SIA is a non-U.S. person who, based on an analysis of travel patterns, potentially poses a national security risk to the United States or its interests. Often such individuals or groups are employing travel patterns known or evaluated to possibly have a nexus to terrorism. DHS analysis includes an examination of travel patterns, points of origin, and/or travel segments that are tied to current assessments of national and international threat environments,” the DHS definition of special interest aliens states.
“This does not mean that all SIAs are “terrorists,” but rather that the travel and behavior of such individuals indicates a possible nexus to nefarious activity (including terrorism) and, at a minimum, provides indicators that necessitate heightened screening and further investigation,” DHS adds.
Illegal migrants can be deemed special interest aliens based solely on their country of origin, such as Turkey or Uzbekistan, according to an internal Border Patrol document previously obtained by the DCNF.
The FBI is currently searching for a group of more than one dozen Uzbek migrants that federal authorities released into the country after they used an ISIS-tied smuggler to cross the southern border illegally.
Former acting Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Mark Morgan told the DCNF it’s alarming that federal authorities chose to release illegal migrants who were known to be special interest aliens.
“So why is it so important to track them down? Because they’re freaking special interest aliens that were smuggled in by somebody with connections to terrorism. Come on, guys. Follow the bouncing ball. I mean, the reason it’s so important is twofold. One, they actually were connected to someone who is connected to a terrorist organization and [two], they’re special interest aliens,” Morgan said.
Special interest aliens are different from illegal migrants whose names appear on the terror watchlist, according to DHS. Individuals whose names appear on the terror watchlist as potential terrorists are “reasonably suspected to be engaging in, has engaged in, or intends to engage in conduct constituting, in preparation for, in aid of, or related to terrorism and/or terrorist activities.”
The Roosevelt Hotel in NYC has 1,025 rooms and American taxpayers are currently paying for every one of those rooms to be filled by illegal immigrants – At a cost of $6,000 per family of illegals, per month.
To add insult to injury, the hotel is actually owned by the Pakistani… pic.twitter.com/orHvPB443y
— Bernie Moreno (@berniemoreno) September 4, 2023
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