EL PASO – In any profession around the world, communication is one of the most important tools in the workplace.
For the U.S. Border Patrol in El Paso, however, it is the number one key element to protecting the largest border metroplex in the nation, covering more than 260 miles.
“We have a very good relationship with our counterparts in Mexico,” agent Joe Romero, a supervisor for the Border Patrol’s El Paso Sector, said. “The common goal that we have is to identify what transnational threats are there.”
THE LINE: We are ‘SOUTH’ of the border but still on the U.S. side w/Ciudad Juaréz just steps away from us. The Rio Grande? It’s right there too but much smaller than what most people in Rio Grande Valley are used to seeing. SERIES➡️ https://t.co/t9E59Axdnq #KSATBorderJourney pic.twitter.com/R3GlDmTIQz— Adrian Garcia (@adrianrolgarcia) July 25, 2018
For nearly 100 years, the El Paso Border Patrol Sector has been in operation as the longest running sector in the country. The creation back in 1924 also marked the beginning of the U.S. Border Patrol.
Today, the El Paso Sector has more than 2,400 border agents under its umbrella who patrol all the way from Fort Hancock, Texas, to Lordsburg, New Mexico.
Romero said because his sector patrols hundreds of miles of international borders, weekly meetings with its counterparts are vital to determine threats.
“One thing that we use is mirror patrols. You have law enforcement on the Mexican side (and) Border Patrol agents on the U.S. side. We literally go up and down the (Rio Grande) area together to show that unity,” Romero said.
Romero said his sector is also different than others along the border in having to deal with both the El Paso and Ciudad Juaréz communities, which have a combined population of nearly 3 million people.
THE LINE: #KSATBorderJourney is in El Paso talking w/ @CBPWestTexas, the largest border metroplex in the nation. Agents patrol more than 260 miles of border & deal w/ 2 communities (El Paso & Ciudad Juarez) of nearly 3 million people combined. SERIES➡️ https://t.co/zqoKVLCfFv pic.twitter.com/F6JmuYUUNM— Adrian Garcia (@adrianrolgarcia) July 25, 2018
It is also an area where drug cartels view it as a prime operation hub for illegal activities.
“Juarez on the Mexican side tends to be the corridor where the drug cartels seem to fight for,” Romero said.
“We continue to fight the illegal smuggling of humans, at times even the trafficking of humans. The movement of the illegal drugs or other contraband (and) the smuggling of individuals who have criminal records, felonies and gang members,” he said.
Romero said because the two sister cities are tied together with rich history, commercial goods and travel going across the border on a daily basis, their ultimate goal is simple.
“To be proactive, trying to combat and defeat the threats that enter our country.”
Thank you to the El Paso Border Patrol Sector for giving us a look at border security.— Tiffany Huertas (@tiffanychuertas) July 26, 2018
They apprehended more than 120,000 ppl in 2006.
After receiving funding from the Secure Fence Act of 2006, the # of apprehensions went down to about 25,000 yr.
Story tomorrow on @ksatnews pic.twitter.com/uhtyXB3cpU
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We’re “SOUTH” of the border BUT still on the U.S. side. Anything look familiar? See that river next to the border wall? That’s the Rio Grande! Ciudad Juaréz is so close that if you threw a rock, it would land on the Mexico side #KSATBorderJourney #KSATnews #BorderPatrol #TheLine #TX2CALI