The Biden administration is running only a handful DNA tests on migrants caught illegally entering the United States across the southern border, virtually accepting unchallenged status of those claiming familial relationships, the Washington Examiner reported Friday.
The paper said the danger is that smugglers often attempt to smuggle "fake families" in with legitimate claimants. The Examiner's report comes from an analysis of data from the Department of Homeland Security, which revealed that of the 52,000 people who crossed the border in March claiming to be part of a family group, only a dozen were administered rapid DNA tests.
Border Patrol agents first detected the subterfuge by smugglers in 2019, with non-family members being hidden amid legitimate families in an attempt to gain illegal passage into the U.S.
The Trump administration authorized Immigration and Customs Enforcement to deploy rapid DNA testing for families it could not confirm were related. ICE conducted 102 tests, in one week of June 2019, which uncovered 17 groups to be unrelated, according to the Examiner.
From mid-April through May 31 of 2019, ICE interviewed 1,126 people and uncovered 422 fraudulent paper documents or fabricated familial relations either by verbal statements or with bogus documents they had purchased from smuggling rings. ICE presented 399 cases for prosecution to the Justice Department, which accepted 315, reported the Examiner.
For example, western Arizona border agents determined that a Brazilian man and 8-year-old girl were not related despite the adult claiming to be her father, as well as a teenage girl and an adult woman from Romania who were not related, the Examiner said.
Rapid DNA tests are used to confirm that an adult accompanying a child, who represent themselves to border officials as a "family" or otherwise claim to be related, are in fact biologically connected.
Since the start of the fiscal year which began in October, only 76 of the approximate 92,000 families caught crossing the border have undergone rapid DNA tests. Three of the 76 families were found to be unrelated, the data showed.
Of the 92,000 families who have crossed, 77,000 of them have crossed after Jan. 1, according to the Washington Examiner.
The Biden administration is apparently showing no indication that it will test people before it releases most into the United States. ICE has been instructed to only verify family relations through rapid DNA tests when absolutely necessary, the Examiner said citing three unidentified sources''familiar with ICE’s testing procedures."
''They are not doing it unless there is a significant suspicion. This administration wants these families and kids released quickly. That is their No. 1 goal, so they are not going to do anything to slow that process down," one of the sources said.
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