Governor Greg Abbott, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), and the Texas National Guard are continuing to work together to secure the border; stop the smuggling of drugs, weapons, and people into Texas; and prevent, detect, and interdict transnational criminal behavior between ports of entry.
Since the launch of Operation Lone Star, the multi-agency effort has led to over 363,000 illegal immigrant apprehensions and more than 26,000 criminal arrests, with more than 24,000 felony charges reported. In the fight against fentanyl, DPS has seized over 380 million lethal doses of fentanyl during this border mission.
Operation Lone Star continues to fill the dangerous gaps left by the Biden Administration’s refusal to secure the border. Every individual who is apprehended or arrested and every ounce of drugs seized would have otherwise made their way into communities across Texas and the nation due to President Joe Biden’s open border policies.
RECENT HIGHLIGHTS FROM OPERATION LONE STAR:
Governor Abbott Announces Statewide Initiatives To Fight Fentanyl Crisis
Governor Greg Abbott yesterday announced two major statewide initiatives to combat the growing national fentanyl crisis and save innocent lives in Texas during his One Pill Kills Summit in Austin. During a press conference following panel discussions, the Governor unveiled a new $10 million multimedia awareness initiative through the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to educate Texans on how to prevent, recognize, and reverse fentanyl poisonings as part of the statewide “One Pill Kills” campaign. The Governor also announced the plan to distribute Naloxone (NARCAN) to all 254 Texas counties by the Texas Division of Emergency Management.
“Thanks to President Joe Biden and his reckless open border policies, the historic levels of fentanyl flooding across our border remains the single deadliest drug threat Texas and our nation have ever seen,” said Governor Abbott. “I am proud to be here today with so many strong voices leading the fight against the fentanyl crisis in Texas communities. Together, we will save more innocent lives from being lost to the scourge of fentanyl.”
Governor Abbott has taken the following actions to address the growing fentanyl crisis plaguing our state and the nation:
- Signing a law enhancing penalties for the manufacturing and distribution of fentanyl
- Designating Mexican drug cartels as terrorist organizations
- Announcing fighting the fentanyl crisis as an emergency item for the 88th Legislative Session
Read more about Governor Abbott’s “One Pill Kills” summit.
WATCH: Austin Teens Lead DPS On High-Speed Pursuit During Smuggling Attempt
Two teenagers from Austin face human smuggling charges after they led DPS troopers on a high-speed pursuit in Kinney County. The 15-year-old driver eventually bailed out into the brush. Five illegal immigrants also bailed out and ran.
The driver and the 14-year-old passenger were arrested and charged with evading and smuggling of persons.
DPS Special Agents Discover Stash House With 95 Illegal Immigrants
DPS special agents were conducting surveillance with U.S. Border Patrol agents near El Paso last weekend when they received information on a potential stash house. A search of the home resulted in a total of 95 illegal immigrants from Mexico, Guatemala, and Ecuador–including two minors.
All were referred to Border Patrol. The stash house manager faces federal charges.
Texas National Guard Apprehends Illegal Immigrants In Laredo Neighborhood
Texas National Guard soldiers assisted in blocking off streets in a Laredo residential area to apprehend multiple illegal immigrants last week. Local law enforcement was alerted that numerous illegal immigrants crossed the border illegally and ran into the neighborhood. Nearby troopers helped establish a blocking position to stop illegal immigrants from being picked up by human traffickers.
“We apprehended 8 illegal immigrants by using vehicles and manpower to close off the area,” said Spc. Sanchez, Bravo Company, Task Force Center. “We use our radio equipment to communicate with law enforcement to assist in apprehensions.”
Illegal immigrants frequently use neighborhoods to evade detection by law enforcement. Backyards and private property are used as waiting areas for a “load-up car” to arrive for traffickers to then transport them to the next stash house or destination.
DPS Special Agents Find 58 Illegal Immigrants In Rental Truck In El Paso
Last week, DPS special agents observed illegal immigrants being loaded up into a Penske rental truck on the West side of El Paso. Further investigation identified a total of 58 illegal immigrants from Mexico, El Salvador, and Guatemala.
All were referred to Border Patrol. The driver, an illegal immigrant from Mexico, was arrested and faces federal charges for human smuggling.