Judge Bars Feds From Removing Razor Wire Near Border

Judge Bars Feds From Removing Razor Wire Near Border

(RepublicanPress.org) – In early March 2021, Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott announced the launch of “Operation Lone Star” to “combat the smuggling” of drugs and undocumented migrants into the state. He later issued a series of disaster declarations for dozens of counties in response to the mounting border crisis. Along the way, Abbott has tangled with federal officials about his efforts to protect Texans by placing floating barriers in the Rio Grande and razor wire fencing along stretches of the state’s border with Mexico.

On October 30, Alia Moses, the Chief United States District Judge for the Western District of Texas, issued an order granting Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s (R) emergency motion for a stay of action or temporary restraining order barring federal officials from tampering with structures erected by Texas authorities to secure its border with Mexico.

The Court named various agencies and officials in the order, including Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, Acting CBP Commissioner Troy Miller, US Border Patrol (USBP) Chief Jason Owens, and Acting USBP Chief Patrol Agent Juan G. Bernal.

The 11-page order related explicitly to “concertina wire” that Texas officials “installed” along the US-Mexico border in Eagle Pass. The stay of action/temporary restraining order bars the named federal officials and entities from taking the following actions:

  • Removing the wire for any purpose other than providing or obtaining emergency medical aid;
  • Concealing the razor wire;
  • “Encumbering the property in any way;”
  • “Scrapping the property;”
  • Disposing of the wire;
  • Tampering with, degrading, transforming, or disassembling the “property” for any reason or in any way other than obtaining emergency medical care, and;
  • Failing to protect the razor wire from any “kind” of loss or damage.

Moses set a deadline for the order at 9:30 a.m. local time on November 13. She also scheduled a hearing on the preliminary injunction for 2:00 p.m. on November 7. The outcome of that hearing could extend the deadline of her October 30 order.

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