BY CELIA RANEY
Originally published by KUNM
ALBUQUERQUE, NM - The United States Border Patrol has closed all five of its New Mexico highway checkpoints, and one in west Texas.
The agents are being relocated to assist with the processing and transportation of an influx of migrants at the border.
More than 600 people per day on average are being taken into custody at the border in the El Paso and Sunland Park area, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
The highway checkpoints are integral to border security, a Border Patrol spokesperson said in a statement Monday, and the closure is intended as a temporary measure.
The Border Patrol says checkpoints help stop wanted felons, find stolen vehicles and seize illegal drugs. More than 137,000 pounds of illegal drugs were seized at border checkpoints between October 1, 2018 and February 28, 2019, according to CBP.
In February of this year, more than 76,000 migrants crossed the border unauthorized, marking an 11 year high, according to The New York Times.