The San Diego sector of US Customs and Border Protection says that there has been a dramatic rise in the amount of undocumented Chinese immigrants entering the United States via San Diego over the course of the last few years.
Sector Border Patrol agents apprehended approximately 663 undocumented Chinese immigrants between the months of October 2015 and May 2016, in comparison with just 48 in the previous fiscal year, five in the 2014 fiscal year and eight in 2013.
US Customs and Border Protection provided the figures which were used in a report by the Union Tribune in San Diego. Wendi Lee, a Border Patrol spokeswoman, says that Chinese nationals were just not coming into the United States as undocumented immigrants, at least via that route, at all prior to those dates.
Lee claims that illegal human smuggling operations, which include undocumented Chinese immigrants, are very lucrative and often charge each immigrant tens of thousands of US dollars in order to be smuggled into the country, between $50,000 to $70,000, only becoming more expensive the further away the immigrants are traveling from and the more arrangements that have to be made by the criminal organizations behind them.
The Union Tribune report also notes that the Chinese are the fifth biggest unauthorized immigrant population in the United States, according to a Migration Institute report on immigration released in October. This estimated that there were approximately 285,000 undocumented immigrants from China residing in the country as of three years ago in 2013.