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New report shows the Justice Department is investigating Texas' Operation Lone Star

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Posted at 6:35 AM, Jul 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-08 10:59:07-04

A new report from the Texas Tribune shows the Justice Department is investigating Operation Lone Star.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott launched the operation in March 2021 to deter immigrants from crossing the border. Then, in May 2021, Abbott issued a disaster declaration giving him the authority to deploy the Texas National Guard to the border.

More than 10,000 national guard members and DPS troopers have been sent for this operation. An analysis by the Texas Tribune shows it's costing taxpayers $2.5 million every week.

According to a report from Texas Tribune, the Department of Justice is investigating Operation Lone Star for alleged civil-rights violations, and mistreatment of national guard members and state troopers sent to the border.

State officials said there have been 11,000 criminal arrests as part of Operation Lone Star. But, as part of an investigation by the Texas Tribune, the report shows it found state officials included inflating the numbers with arrests and statewide drug seizures which had no connection to the border. It also found thousands of migrants seeking to enter the country have been arrested for trespassing onto private property, and some have been kept in jail for weeks without charges.

Another report by the Tribune and Army Times details troubles with the National Guard deployment, including delayed payments to soldiers, a shortage of equipment, and poor living conditions. The report comes as Abbott announced Thursday that the state will spend an additional $30 million to fund Operation Lone Star to provide grants to cities and counties to reduce crimes related to border crossings.

Abbott has not yet commented on the DOJ investigation.