Border Patrol agents in Texas detained two large groups of hundreds of migrants who had crossed illegally into the US, including nearly 50 unaccompanied children – some younger than 13.
Agents in the McAllen Border Patrol Station encountered a group made up of 78 family members and 20 unaccompanied minors near Penitas, Texas on Sunday, according to a release from Customs and Border Protection.
Then on Monday, agents in the Rio Grande City Border Patrol detained 107 family members and 24 unaccompanied children near La Grulla, Texas.
The Biden administration, which has been scrambling to handle the surge of families and unaccompanied minors crossing the border and overwhelming federal facilities, are predicting that rush will break records and last for another six months.
The White House, according to an Axios report on Monday, said the number of children could rise to 26,000 a month by September, the end of the 2021 fiscal year, far exceeding the 16,000 arriving in the US this month.
The development comes as a new batch of photos show a group of migrants on inflatable boats guided by Mexican smugglers – or coyotes -crossing the Rio Grande river in the dark early Sunday morning and surrendering to Border Patrol agents near Roma, Texas.
The migrants from Central American countries and Ecuador included a mix of children, women and a few young men.
In one image, a staffer from the Bethel Mission Outreach Center, a nonprofit that assists migrants, is shown helping a child from the boat to shore.
In another, a woman from Ecuador with a child propped on her shoulders walks toward the agents after exiting the boat.
Other pictures show Border Patrol officers processing members of the group’s asylum claims and brightly colored wristbands worn by the migrants so they can be tracked by the smugglers discarded in a heap.