Attorney General Jeff Sessions makes visit to San Diego border

A boy weeps after being caught illegally crossing into the U.S. border from Mexico near McAllen Texas U.S.   Thomson Reuters

A boy weeps after being caught illegally crossing into the U.S. border from Mexico near McAllen Texas U.S. Thomson Reuters

Currently, border patrol agents usually try to keep families united by sending all their members to the same detention center, but with the new policy "most parents will be prosecuted and children sent to a separate refugee facility", the official said.

The visit by Sessions and Thomas D. Homan, the acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, was the latest in a series of appearances by Trump administration officials to tout a "zero-tolerance" stance against illegal immigration.

Crossing the US border without authorization is already a misdemeanor on the first offense, and can be a felony for people who have been previously taken out of the U.S.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is taking up immigration issues at the U.S. -Mexico border in San Diego on Monday.

Sessions visited the Mexican border near Border Field State Park to outline the tough new policy on illegal immigration. "If you don't like that, then don't smuggle children over our border". "The second situation when we separate is when we prosecute". "But we can not take everyone on Earth who is in a hard situation".

Sessions noted that the Department of Justice will send 35 prosecutors and 18 immigration judges to the Southwest, equating to a roughly 50 percent increase in the number of judges hearing asylum cases.

Under the new policy, everyone crossing illegally will be detained and prosecuted - a vast undertaking.

Monday's announcement came about a week after hundreds of Central American migrants traveled to the San Ysidro, Calif., port of entry seeking asylum following a monthlong caravan through Mexico. "We need legality and integrity in our immigration system", he continued.

The draconian new policy is expected to send a flood of deportation cases - and legal challenges - into federal courts.

Sessions also announced the Justice Department's intention to criminally prosecute every immigrant who illegally crosses the border, as opposed to simply busing them back over the border.

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