Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents on Thursday night arrested two large groups of illegal migrants, totaling 253 people, at a location near the southern border.

CBP said a group of agents were screening 166 illegal migrants south of Mission, Texas, when another group of 87 turned themselves into agents. According to a press release, the groups mainly consisted of irresponsible minors and family units and came from human smugglers.

The release reads, “Even with the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus, human smugglers continue to try to reduce the danger to their lives and not to the health of the citizens of our great nation.

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“American border patrol agents of the Rio Grande sector will continue to protect the nation and the community against these criminal elements.”

Thousands of immigrants reportedly approached the border as the arrests took place as the Biden administration worked toward policies that would liberalize the country’s immigration system. In the midst of those policies, Biden has committed to building a path to citizenship – some describing inhumanity – illegally for the people here.

According to CBP Public Affairs Officer Rod Rice, “CBP has seen a steady increase in border encounters since April 2020, due to increased COVID-19 restrictions and social guidelines that allow certain facilities to be maximally protected. ”

CBP also reported that agents on Wednesday caught 38 illegal migrants who they thought might be a house.

After release, “upon arrival, several subjects were seen exiting the residence through a broken window in an attempt to escape before being detained.” “Agents and personnel entered the property and faced many other topics.”

While the agency is committed to “processing” migrants, the Biden administration recently reinstated the repealed “catch and release” policy under former President Trump.

This is the first time since the 2019 boom that the CBP has been forced to revive the controversial policy.

The CBP said three factors led to the decision to release illegal immigrant families: the increase of migrant traffic – specifically, families and unaccompanied children from Central America; Refusal to accept additional families with children under 12 years of age in Mexico where migrant camps grow exponentially, increasing shelter and services; And COVID-19, which severely reduced border patrol detention and transport capacity.

Granthshala News’ William Lazaness contributed to this report.