Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has secured an emergency restraining order after federal agents were documented destroying barrier fencing to facilitate aliens’ entry near the Texas-Mexico border. Texas filed the initial lawsuit against the Biden Administration’s Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”), DHS Secretary Mayorkas, and other agencies on Tuesday, October 24, after numerous documented incidents of barrier destruction during a severe immigration surge in recent months. These instances often included using wire cutters to create gaps in fencing then waving aliens through and assisting their entry in other ways. At times, agents were observed attaching ropes to pickup trucks to enable aliens to scale the riverbank and enter the United States. 

By Friday, October 27, federal agents were observed escalating their efforts to destroy Texas’s border barriers, using heavy machinery such as forklifts to uproot large sections of fencing to facilitate mass entry. In response, Attorney General Paxton immediately filed an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order. Within half an hour of the filing, the Biden Administration further escalated the barrier destruction, as agents were filmed using a forklift to smash the fencing against the ground repeatedly. On Saturday, Texas filed additional documentation about this incident, and the motion for a temporary restraining order was granted the next working day, Monday, October 30. The federal court has set the hearing on Texas’s motion for preliminary injunction seeking to prevent the agents’ cutting, destroying, damaging, or otherwise interfering with Texas’s concertina wire fence for November 7, 2023. 

“The federal government’s outrageous escalation in response to our lawsuit demonstrates Biden’s disturbing contempt for the State of Texas, for the citizens of the United States, and for our country’s entire foundation of the rule of law,” said Attorney General Paxton. “By acting quickly and monitoring their actions closely, we were able to secure a restraining order, and I am confident we will continue to prevail.” 

To read the order, click here