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Migrant border apprehensions in May jump to highest in 13 years

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX – Migrant apprehensions at the U.S.-Mexico border leaped to their highest monthly numbers in more than 10 years in May, federal authorities said, totaling 132,887.

Customs and Border Protection said another 11,391 were deemed inadmissible, pushing the number of migrants stopped from entering through the Southwest to 144,278.

Apprehensions hadn’t passed 100,000 since April 2007.

This past April, border agents apprehended 99,304.

“We are bursting at the seams,” Randy Howe, the agency’s executive director of operations, said.

“This can’t continue.”

For the month, the Border Patrol’s Yuma Sector experienced a 381% increase of family unit apprehensions from last May.

Officials said they weren’t counting on the hotter summer weather to lead to a seasonal downturn in migration as it usually does.

Already, agents have apprehended large groups of migrants in the first days of June.

“We’re not seeing any signs of anything dropping off,” Brian Hastings, the Border Patrol’s chief of law enforcement operations, said.

President Donald Trump has asked for $4.5 billion to address the influx of migrants, but Congress has yet to approve it.

He’s also threatened to impose a 5% tariff on Mexican products if authorities there don’t curb migration from Central America.

Mexican officials went to Washington this week to lobby the Trump administration not to make that move.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Peter Samore and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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