A widely touted Border Patrol initiative to send migrants back to Mexico from distant border cities to discourage them from trying again may be one of its least effective methods.
That finding comes in a study that offers a detailed assessment of how the agency's new enforcement strategies are working.
The so-called lateral repatriations aim to make it more difficult for migrants to reconnect with smugglers. The Congressional Research Service finds those migrants are among the most likely to get caught again.
The study also finds that criminal prosecutions appear to be the most effective deterrents. Meantime, a separate study by the Council on Foreign Relations, found the capture rate for the Border Patrol may be lower than the agency's own estimate, perhaps by as much as one-third.
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