Some border patrol stations have been slow to carry out President Donald Trump’s immigration enforcement executive order and instead have continued former President Barack Obama’s “catch-and-release” policies, according to a union official.
Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, told LifeZette that he raised concerns Thursday with U.S. Border Patrol Chief Ronald Vitiello. He said he is confident that issue soon will be corrected.
But Judd said as recently as Thursday, some border patrol stations were still releasing border-jumpers, often without even issuing notices to appear in immigration court hearings. Obama’s policy was to release anyone claiming to have been living continuously in the United States since before Jan. 1, 2014, if they did not have criminal records or active warrants.
“We’re still walking people out the door,” Judd said. “The catch-and-release policy is still in place in some sectors.”
Judd said it was a minority of sectors that have been resisting Trump’s new directives. He laid the blame at the feet of U.S. Border Patrol managers, not front-line officers.
“This is not the administration’s fault. This is Border Patrol’s fault,” he said. “It varies from sector to sector. Some sectors still are operating under the Obama administration’s policies. And that’s troubling … It’s just been very willy-nilly.”