After waves of migrants illegally crossed Texas’ open border, the federal government has opened a new taxpayer-funded facility for more illegal immigrants roughly 167 miles southwest of San Antonio.

Last week, retired U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Agent Victor Avila personally investigated Texas’ open border situation. There, he discovered a new “Federal Border Patrol Camp” in Laredo. The new facility is about 175 miles southeast of the Del Rio International Bridge, where nearly 15,000 illegal border-crossers massed last month.

Avila provided Texas Scorecard with photos of the outside of the facility.


“They’re housing people already, and they’re expecting thousands,” Avila said, adding that he thinks it’s for the expected mass influx of Haitians approaching our open border.

“No one knows about [the facility],” he said. “I got in and I got kicked out.”

Though he was unable to take photographs inside, Avila described what federal officials bought for non-citizens with taxpayer monies. “The equipment, the technology, the air conditioning, the water, I mean … it’s nice in there. Nice and cool,” he said. “It’s incredible what our government does for other people, but not our own citizens.”

“My question is: Why are we building more facilities, costing billions of dollars, when we could just secure the border and not allow them [in] in the first place?”

Inquiries about the facility were sent to the offices of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol.

“You may be referring to the new temporary soft-sided processing facility in Laredo that recently opened,” Peter Carr, deputy director of CBP Media, replied. “On September 24th, we announced its opening, along with video and photos and a message from the Laredo Border Patrol Chief.”

Carr provided a link to CBP’s press release about the facility. Avila confirmed it was the same facility he visited.

“The intent of the soft-sided facility is to provide a suitable facility for agents to house and process single adults, family member units, and noncitizen unaccompanied children arriving at the Southwest Border,” it reads.

Carr didn’t address our questions regarding whether Abbott or any other state official was notified about the facility or if media would be allowed in.

Abbott’s office did not reply before publication.

This year, Abbott made a public pivot toward border security, but he has given no orders to stop illegal border crossings. Recently, photos emerged of Texas National Guard soldiers allegedly helping illegal immigrants cross into Texas.

We asked Avila if, based on his experience, Abbott is doing enough to stop illegal border crossings. “Absolutely not,” he replied. “A lot of people are angry at him because there’s nothing being done.”

Avila added that, among Texans in the border region, Abbott “has support with some people,” but “there’s a lot of support for [former State Sen.] Don Huffines as well down there, and Allen West.” Avila has endorsed Huffines for governor.

Robert Montoya

Born in Houston, Robert Montoya is an investigative reporter for Texas Scorecard. He believes transparency is the obligation of government.