Border apprehensions have been nearly halved since President Donald Trump took office, according to government figures released Wednesday.
“The drop in apprehensions shows a marked change in trends,” Security of Homeland Security John Kelly said in a statement. The Customs and Border Protection figures show that apprehensions dropped 40 percent between January and February.
“This change in the trend line is especially significant because CBP historically sees a 10-20 percent increase in apprehensions of illegal immigrations from January to February,” Kelly said. The drop from January to February was from 31,578 apprehensions to 18,762 apprehensions.
Kelly added, “Additionally, we are seeing an increase in the fees charges by human smugglers along the U.S. southwest border.” The fees for “coyetes” have increased from $3,500 to $8,000 in certain regions since Trump won the election in November, according to Kelly.
Since taking office President Trump has ordered the construction of a southern border wall and removed restrictions placed on Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents by President Obama.