UPDATED 10:49 AM PT — Friday, August 30, 2019
According to California Border Patrol agents, new infrastructure in an area known as “smuggler’s gulch” is making a difference. On Thursday, the agent in charge — Justin De La Torre — stated a steep, open canyon between Tijuana and San Diego has been used for decades by immigrants attempting to smuggle drugs into the U.S. from Mexico.
The agent said when he first started working in “smuggler’s gulch” there needed to be at least five agents on patrol. He also noted that effective infrastructure there was lacking. However, De La Torre now says the wall’s formidable features have successfully bolstered Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) security efforts.
“It has an anti-climb feature, it’s made of steel, it also has a concrete base that prevents digging from underneath, and now we’re able to control this area with the new infrastructure,” he stated.
De La Torre added, the agents who patrolled “smugglers gulch” in the past only had a fence made out of landing mat to aid security efforts. He said the fence helped, but it was easy to climb.
President Trump moved to replace the fencing along the San Diego border earlier this year as his administration sped up moves to build taller, stronger border reinforcement. During the State of the Union address, the president stated CBP agents are the ones who see how the wall is helping mitigate the crisis at the border first-hand.
“This is a smart, strategic, see-through steel barrier — not just a simple concrete wall,” said the president. “It will be deployed in the areas identified by border agents as having the greatest need, and as these agents will tell you, where walls go up, illegal crossings go way down.”
Border officials stated they are continuing their efforts to construct several miles of wall along the southwest border. The CBP confirmed several wall construction projects are underway in California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas