Over 700 Migrants Apprehended on Weekend Near Mexico Border in Largest Number This Year

Border agents apprehended 736 migrants in three large groups in southern Texas over a three-day period beginning on Friday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced on Monday.

One group of nearly 300 people was said to be the biggest single group encountered by Rio Grande Valley agents this year.

Rio Grande City Border Patrol Station (RGC) agents apprehended the migrants in three large groups near the Mexican border in the small town of La Grulla, Texas.

The border agents reportedly arrested 235 migrants on Friday. The group included 187 family members, 27 unaccompanied children and 21 single adults, according to CBP.

More than half of the migrants arrested were reported to be citizens of Guatemala. The rest of the people are from Honduras, El Salvador, Venezuela and Nicaragua.

A larger group of 298 migrants was arrested on Saturday morning in the same Rio Grande Valley town. CBP reported it was the largest group of migrants encountered by Rio Grande Valley agents so far this fiscal year.

Within this group, one person who was exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms was taken to a hospital. The person was said to have later tested positive.

Another group of 203 migrants apprehended by RGC agents on Sunday included 158 family members, 29 unaccompanied children and 16 single adults. Of those, 127 are citizens of Honduras.

The CBP said in a press release that all the subjects apprehended have been processed.

Title 42 travel restrictions remain in effect, preventing migrants from crossing the border and claiming asylum in the U.S. The program allows border agents to prohibit the entry of persons who potentially pose a health risk, put into effect by the Trump administration during the COVID-19 pandemic and continued under President Joe Biden.

Title 42 travel restrictions are set to expire on Wednesday, and there has been no indication from American or Mexican officials if they will be extended.

In its news release about the group apprehensions in La Grulla, the CBP wrote: "Even with the spread of the COVID-19 virus, human smugglers continue to try these brazen attempts with zero regard for the lives they endanger nor to the health of the citizens of our great nation."

"The U.S. Border Patrol agents of the Rio Grande Valley Sector will continue to safeguard the nation and community against these criminal elements," the statement added.

The CBP reported on July 16 that border patrol encountered 188,829 migrants trying to enter the U.S. along the Southwest border in June. The number represents the most migrants apprehended along the border this fiscal year.

Border Patrol threatening sign
Agents in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas announced their biggest apprehension of migrants this year over the weekend. Above, border patrol agents apprehend a group of migrants near downtown El Paso, Texas, on March 15, 2021. JUSTIN HAMEL/AFP via Getty Images