Grassley Questions DHS: ‘Alarmingly Low’ DNA Testing for Illegal Immigrants

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Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) is asking the Department of Homeland Security to provide answers about new data that he claims shows an “alarmingly small” percentage of DNA samples of immigrants received by the FBI.

In a letter addressed to Customs and Border Protection acting commissioner Troy Miller and Homeland Security secretary Alejandro Mayorkas Grassley cites data that his office received from whistleblowers regarding CBP DNA collection of immigrants arriving at both the northern and southern border.

He wrote: “These disclosures show that the FBI received an alarmingly small percentage of DNA samples in the first quarter of FY23.”

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has received whistleblower information about DNA testing at the southern border.

He cites statistics that show in Q1 FY23 there were 865 333 encounters with migrants, and the FBI received 347 231 DNA samples — approximately 40%

In Q2, only 31.21 % of the FBI’s requests were answered, and this number increased to 37% in Q3. He claimed to have requested FY 23 data in the past but not received any.

He said that the failure of CBP and DHS to collect DNA from illegal immigrants was deeply concerning, given the high number of illegal crossings and CBP encounters and ICE detainees who had prior criminal records. This failure weakens the justice system and gives criminals more power to cross our border illegally. It puts American lives at risk.

Grassley had previously stated that the Justice Dept. In 2020, the exemptions to the 2005 DNA Fingerprint Act will be removed. This will allow more people to be fingerprinted. According to a report by the Government Accountability Office, there are still some exemptions for those under 14 years old and those with a DNA profile.

The government is also dealing with a lack of test kits. Recently, Republicans highlighted a 15-month backlog in DNA testing.

Grassley cites a series of reports that show that illegal immigrants were connected to crimes via DNA matches. These include unsolved criminal cases, despite what he calls “insufficient DNA efforts” by federal authorities.

In his letter to Grassley, he asks for a variety of information. He asks specifically if Jose Antonio Ibarra, who was charged with the murder of Georgia Student Laken Riley and has been confirmed as an illegal immigrant who entered the U.S. in 2012, was ever the subject of a DNA test.

Moreover, he requests additional plans for the implementation of the DNA Fingerprint Act as well as data for Q4 as well as FY24 so far.

Illegal immigration will be one of the top issues in 2024, according to the letter. Both President Biden and former President Donald Trump visited the border at Texas’ southern end last week. Polling indicates that this is a major concern among voters.

CBP sources say that more than 21,000 migrants have been encountered in the last 72 hours. The Tucson Sector is the busiest, with over 5,400 encounters. The numbers are increasing as Spring approaches, and this is in line with the usual seasonal surge. However, the numbers indicate that it will be a major surge.