“Border Patrol did not issue A-numbers to 107 of 384 migrants in our statistical sample,” reads a report from the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector-General. (An A-number is a unique number that DHS assigns to every migrant, the report explains, “which allows immigration and law enforcement officials to track and locate a migrant’s A-File for a complete history of their immigration encounters.”)
Of those 107 migrants without A-numbers, Border Patrol paroled 104 into the U.S. interior. The Inspector-General noted that this was a result of the agency operating near capacity at moments of heavy migration. As a result, however, “Border Patrol and USCIS could not provide 80 migrant files we requested because the files were either lost, disposed of, or in transit.”
— “U.S. Border Patrol Screened Migrants at the Southwest Border but Could Strengthen Processes.” Washington: DHS Office of Inspector-General, September 19, 2022. <https://www.oig.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/assets/2022-09/OIG-22-71-Sep22.pdf>.