Texas files lawsuit over alleged destruction of border security measures

In a recent court filing, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton accused the federal government of destroying Texas' concertina wire along the border. Texas' top cop is taking legal action by suing the Department of Homeland Security ("DHS"), DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and several other agencies and officials.

The lawsuit states that federal agents have been cutting the state's strategically placed concertina wire to encourage and assist illegal border crossings. This wire was intended to secure the Texas-Mexico border and curb the influx of illegal migrants.

The edge of the Rio Grande in Eagle Pass' Shelby Park is lined with concertina wire in Eagle Pass, Texas, on August 24, 2023. The buoys were installed in the river at a popular migrant crossing point in July on the instructions of conservative Texas

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Paxton argues that the destruction of Texas' concertina wire constitutes the illegal destruction of state property and undermines the state's border deterrence efforts. The federal government's actions allegedly create openings in Texas' border barriers, making it easier for individuals to enter the state illegally.


The lawsuit seeks to halt this alleged unlawful practice, requesting a court injunction to prevent further damage to private property and uphold federal law.


The filing cited data from the federal government, U.S. Customs and Border Protection ("CBP"), stating that approximately 458,000 aliens were at the border in fiscal year 2020, with an increase to over 1.7 million encounters in fiscal year 2021 and nearly 2.4 million in fiscal year 2022. This year, in late September, Eagle Pass Mayor Rolando Salinas expressed concern about a surge of over 6,000 undocumented immigrants crossing the border in 48 hours without consequences,

Concertina wire is seen on the river bank as migrants cross the Rio Grande into the United States in Eagle Pass, Texas, as seen from Piedras Negras, Coahuila state, Mexico, on August 4, 2023. (Photo by Guillermo Arias / AFP) (Photo by GUILLERMO ARIAS

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Attorney General Paxton emphasizes Texas' sovereign right to construct border barriers to prevent the entry of illegal aliens. The lawsuit contends that the federal government's actions, including cutting wires and assisting aliens in crossing, are unlawful and pose risks to the country and its citizens. Paxton calls for judicial intervention to address what he views as a pressing immigration crisis exacerbated by the Biden administration's policies.

In a related move, the Texas Senate has passed Senate Bill 11, often called the Border Bill, granting the state the authority to enforce immigration laws—a role traditionally held by the federal government. This legislative development reflects Texas' efforts to address the challenges posed by illegal immigration proactively.

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Furthermore, a federal appeals court has allowed Texas to maintain its floating barrier on a section of the Rio Grande despite concerns raised by a judge about its impact on the safety of migrants and U.S.-Mexico relations.

This decision underscores the ongoing legal and policy battles surrounding border security and immigration enforcement in Texas.