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2004 Illegal Aliens And Visas


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2004 study of the relationship between border patrol data and visa application data. In this study I used psychological research methods to examine the relationships between immigration and consular variables.

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2004 Illegal Aliens And Visas

  1. 1. UNCLASSIFIED MEXICO 00002281 VZCZCXRO7419 RR RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHMC RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM DE RUEHME #2281/01 0942224 ZNR UUUUU ZZH R 042224Z APR 05 FM AMEMBASSY MEXICO TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2515 INFO RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE RUEHFSI/DIR FSINFATC BT UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 MEXICO 002281 DEPT FOR CA/FPP FSI FOR CONSULAR TRAINING E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: KFRD, CVIS, KCRM, ASEC, PTER, MX SUBJECT: MOST POTENTIAL ILLEGALS DON'T EVEN TRY FOR VISAS REF: 2004 MEXICO 08680 1. SUMMARY: We recently analyzed data regarding the 225,172 people intercepted by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) while attempting to enter the U.S. without inspection (EWI), from September to November 2004 along both the northern and southern border. Checking their names against CCD, we learned that fewer than five percent had ever applied for an NIV. Aliens with other nationalities were more likely to have tried to obtain visas than Mexicans. Not unexpectedly we learned that almost 80% of the EWIs were between the ages of 18 and 35, and significantly more than half were male. Also the majority were Mexicans, most of whom were apprehended in the Arizona Sector. Fewer than seventy of the aliens had “special interest alien” nationalities. END SUMMARY 97 PERCENT OF APPREHENDED EWIs DID NOT APPLY FOR A VISA 2. In December, we received a list of 225,172 CBP apprehensions that took place in all CBP sectors, including the Mexican and Canadian borders. Interceptions were
  2. 2. highest along the southern border. CBP sectors in Arizona accounted for 51.5% of all intercepts, Texas accounted for 33%, and California had 13.5%. The northern border accounted for only 1% of EWIs intercepted, while Miami, New Orleans and Puerto Rico combined accounted for another 1%. 3. With assistance from CA/EX/CSD, we checked the names against the Combined Consular Database (CCD) to see how many had previously applied for a visa of any type. The answer was fewer than five percent. Thus 95 percent of the 225,172 intending illegal entrants from the CBP list never tried to apply for a visa. This indicates that the overwhelming majority of people who intend to enter the U.S. illegally don’t even try to fool a consular officer about their intent. Rather they see applying for a visa as hopelessly futile. 4. Analyzing the list, we noticed that there were a number of duplicate names. Our CBP colleagues indicated that multiple apprehensions of the same individuals were the most likely source of the duplication. To refine results, we eliminated duplicate entries in the original CBP list, and were left with 202,552 as the number of apprehended EWIs. Of this figure, 176,927 were Mexicans, or 87% of the total. The remaining 25,615,or 13% of the total, were third country nationals, usually referred to as “other than Mexican” (OTM). We then removed duplicates from the list of NIV applicants and found that the numbers changed to 5,217 who had previously applied for NIVs, or 2.6% of EWIs apprehended. Of those who had applied for visas, 3,886 were Mexicans and 1331 were OTMs. In percentage terms, 2.2% of the 176,927 Mexican EWIs had applied for an NIV, as compared to 5.2% of OTM EWIs. Considering that OTMs must travel much greater distances before reaching a U.S. border, it is not surprising that OTMs would prefer to have a visa and so would also have a higher rate of NIV application than Mexicans. Indeed, we expected that the OTM application rate would be greater than 5%. NIV REFUSALS APPARENTLY GIVE UP, THEY DO NOT TRY THE DESERT 5. During the same September to November period, 96,799 NIV applicants were refused in Mexico. Comparing these names with the 2,476 EWIs who had been refused under section 214(b), it appears that fewer than 3 percent of our refusals will be apprehended trying to cross the desert with a coyote. While no one knows the exact proportion of
  3. 3. apprehensions compared to those who are successful at getting past CBP, the most often invoked ratio is one apprehension for every three attempts to cross. Using that formula, a formula we are aware is subject to challenge, we can extrapolate that something on the order of 606,000 people attempted to enter during the sample period, of whom 7,500 would be NIV refusals. Restated as a percentage, this would yield an expectation that 8 percent of those refused an NIV could be expected to try the desert. Hence these numbers tell us that approximately 92% of refused NIV applicants do not/not try to enter without inspection. This number is subject to challenge based on the one in three formula. IDENT HELPS DETER IDENTITY FRAUD 6. The possibility intercepted EWIs were using false names posed a risk to our conclusions. Accordingly, we discussed this problem with colleagues in CBP, who feel that widespread IDENT fingerprinting had significantly increased the risks of presenting a fraudulent identity and that this resulted in a decrease in EWIs using fraudulent identities. This would hold true even if some of those intercepted were not fingerprinted, if we accept that the probability of fingerprinting and likelihood of prosecution would act as a deterrent. Additionally, since names of those intercepted are not currently passed on to the CLASS database, there is little risk in giving their true name at time of apprehension. WHO IS TRYING TO CROSS, DEMOGRAPHICS OF ILLEGAL MIGRATION 7. CBP identified 87% of the 202,552 EWIs apprehended as Mexicans. This tracks with other estimates that most illegal migrants in the U.S. are from Mexico. Of the remaining other than Mexican apprehensions, OTMs, the second largest group was 18,309 people from Central America, or 9%. The country breakdown shows Honduras with 8,886, El Salvador with 5,921, and Guatemala with 3,232 people respectively. After the Central Americans, Brazil accounted for 2% of the total; Cuba and China each had 0.3% of the EWIs; Nicaragua had 0.2%. 8. Recent press reports note the risks of Middle Easterners trying to cross into the U.S. using the traditional routes of illegal aliens. However, neither CBP records nor Mexican immigration statistics show any large-
  4. 4. scale efforts on the part of Middle Easterners. There were only 69 SIAs in the total or .0035% of the CBP apprehensions. The breakdown shows that of the five Afghans, three were apprehended near our southern border. Likewise one of the six Algerians, seven of the eleven Egyptians, eight of the nine Iranians, six of the seven Iraqis, three of the 28 Pakistanis, two Syrians and one Yemeni were intercepted near our southern border. Thus of 69 SIAs, 31 individuals, or 45% of the SIAs, were apprehended along our southern border. By contrast, 98% of the total 202,552 CBP apprehensions were intercepted at or near our southern border. 9. We would like to note that the overwhelming majority of apprehensions by Mexican immigration (INM) officials are also from Central America. Of the 148,361 apprehensions made by INM in all of Mexico from January to August of 2004, 96% were Central Americans. (See reftel). It is important to note that Mexico does not require visas of Brazilians, but they also accounted for 3857 INM detentions. INM also intercepted 389 Chinese. 10. Ages for those intercepted by CBP ranged from infants to centenarians. As expected, the vast majority, or 73% were aged 18 to 35. 20,041, or 10%, were under 18 years old; 34,443, or 17% were over 35. Children under 11 accounted for an incredible 6,243 apprehensions. 11. Gender was not noted in the apprehension data. However, we selected a random sample of 383 from the 202,552 (total apprehensions) and by checking first names, it appeared that approximately 80% of those apprehended were male. We next selected a random sample of 378 for gender from the 25,625 OTMs. Gender proportions were not as striking among OTMs as within the total. Our random sample showed 63% of OTMs were male. The most likely explanation for the differential is that the goal of OTMs is more likely to be permanent immigration rather than short-term work which is still most likely to be the intent of Mexican EWIs. 12. Caveat: We appreciate that this is a snapshot of what took place during a three-month period at the end of 2004. While we believe the data are indicative of current trends, it is possible that data collected for a full year or during a different quarter of the year might yield different results. We believe the trends are worth
  5. 5. reviewing periodically in order to better assess our vulnerabilities and strengths. BT #2281 NNNN UNCLASSIFIED MEXICO 00002281