The United States Border Patrol (USBP), a Federal police force, is the mobile uniformed law enforcement arm of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), a bureau of the Department of Homeland Security. In prior to 2003, USBP was part of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), an agency within the U.S. Department of Justice. The Border Patrol was founded on May 28, 1924; its main purpose to detect and prevent the entrance of illegal aliens into the United States of America. Prior to this the US Army and various para-military forces patrolled the border. Additionally, the Border Patrol assists in facilitating the flow of legal immigration, protecting intellectual property rights, and in the fight against the smuggling of illegal narcotics.
Currently, the USBP employs 9,500 men and women, and is responsible for patrolling 8,000 miles of land and sea borders. The great majority of Border Patrol personnel are deployed at the US-Mexico border, where they’re assigned to fight drug trafficking and illegal immigration.
The federal government’s Office of Personnel Management found that the Border Patrol suffers from an attrition rate of approximately 42-46% for Border Patrol Agents during their first year of service. (See OPM’s Federal and Law Enforcement Pay and Benefits, Appendix B1 – Quit Rate Data, 2003).
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