Tracking Movement of Illegal Aliens From NGOs to the U.S. Interior

Securing America’s Borders

Tracking Movement of Illegal Aliens From NGOs to the U.S. Interior

Dec 5, 2022 6 min read


The Biden border crisis was sparked by the deliberate implementation of open-borders policies and the removal of Trump-era borders security policies by the Biden administration. While the Biden administration caused the crisis and allows it to persist, they are not the only party responsible for facilitating this crisis. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have played a substantial role in exacerbating the crisis by actively helping process and transport tens of thousands of illegal aliens into the interior of the United States.

After observing this dynamic, the Heritage Oversight Project and Heritage Border Security and Immigration Center obtained and analyzed movement patterns of anonymized mobile devices that were detected on the premises of over 30 NGO facilities at or near the border. These locations were selected either based on public knowledge of these facilities being used to process illegal aliens or on reliable human source information. All physical locations were verified and physical location boundaries were defined to include building and parking areas to minimize false positives.

The investigation found approximately 30,000 cell phone devices in the NGO facilities and traced the location of those devices in the U.S. during the month of January 2022. We assign a high degree of confidence to the assumption that the vast majority of these devices belong to individuals who illegally crossed the border. This is based on first-hand observation of facilities in which illegal aliens invariably outnumber facility workers and volunteers by many degrees. Additionally, based on the travel patterns and the end location of these devices, we assume that the vast majority of the devices reflect a migration pattern from the border of illegal aliens as opposed to a consistent travel pattern of NGO workers traveling from around the country to the border and back.


The below findings only provide a sampling of the problem as opposed to a comprehensive review. The investigation involved only select facilities during January 2022. The findings are meant to show only a snapshot in time of the scope and scale of the border crisis. The purpose of the investigation was to test the anecdotal reporting that the movement of illegal aliens through the United States is being facilitated not just by the federal government under President Joe Biden and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, but also by NGOs. Are NGOs actively involved in helping illegal aliens travel from the border throughout much of the interior of the United States? The investigation provided evidence for this hypothesis.

Phase One

Phase One of the investigation involved “geofencing” the physical locations of the Val Verde Border Humanitarian Center and the Del Rio Customs and Border Protection Station. The Val Verde Border Humanitarian Center describes itself as “a group of local citizens and agencies that have united to develop an efficient way to transition refugees to their destinations upon release of federal custody through a unified and coordinated effort.” Furthermore, the group states, “We also do our best to arrange transportation to the city in which their U.S. sponsor lives.” During a 2021 site visit to the Val Verde Border Humanitarian, employees reported processing over 1,000 individuals in a three-day period. Individuals were reported to travel to a wide variety of locations, including Tennessee, Utah, Indiana, Florida, and New York.

The Del Rio Station for Customs and Border Protection’s “area of responsibility includes approximately 30 miles of river border and portions of several counties.” The station is less than five miles from the U.S-Mexico border and the Del Rio Bridge, the site where thousands of illegal aliens assembled in make-shift campsites in September 2021.

Cell-phone location information at Val Verde
Phase One: Geofenced Val Verde Processing Facility
Cell-phone location information at Del Rio CBP Station
Phase One: Geofenced Del Rio CBP Station

During January 2022, 407 devices that were on-premises at either facility were later traced to 40 different states.

Nation-wide locations originating from Del Rio and Val Verde
Phase One: Devices from Val Verde/Del Rio—Traced Nationwide

Phase Two

Phase Two of the investigation involved the geofencing of 20 NGO facilities. These locations were chosen based on human source information, as well as open-source intelligence, that they may be involved in helping illegal aliens travel from the border to various parts of the interior. During the month of January 2022, more than 22,000 unique mobile devices were detected at these NGO facilities. The devices were later traced to 431 separate U.S. congressional districts out of a total 435 congressional districts.

Phase 2 geofenced locations of interest
Phase Two: Locations of Interest—Yielded over 22,000 Unique Devices
Nation-wide locations originating from 20 NGO facilities
Phase Two: Devices Traced Nationwide

The Phase Two results demonstrate that of the 52 congressional districts with the highest density of devices, 71% were Republican congressional districts. Texas had the highest density of all states, followed by Oklahoma. This is to be expected, at least in the first phase of an illegal alien’s journey, because Texas is an entry state and Oklahoma would be the next state frequently traversed during travel due north.

Phase Three

Phase Three of the investigation involved geofencing 13 NGO locations located in close physical proximity to the border. These locations were selected based on human source intelligence that the facilities may be involved in the processing and transportation of illegal aliens into the interior of the United States. Over 5,000 unique mobile devices were identified as being on-premises at the targeted location. Devices were later traced nationwide to 434 congressional districts out of a total of 435 congressional districts.

Phase 3 locations of interest
Phase Three: Locations of Interest—Yielded over 5,000 Unique Devices
Nation-wide locations originating from 13 NGO facilities near border
Phase Three: Devices Traced Nationwide

Phase Four

Phase Four of the investigation focused on geofencing Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley, located in San Juan, Texas. Nearly 3,400 unique mobile devices were identified as being on-premises. These devices were later tracked to 433 congressional districts.

Phase four Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley
Phase Four: Geofenced Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley
Nation-wide locations originating from Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley
Phase Four: Devices Traced Nationwide


The investigation confirmed that a host of NGOs are actively facilitating the Biden border crisis. Overflow from Customs and Border Protection is being transferred to these organizations so that Border Patrol avoids overcrowded facilities. These organizations apply for, and receive, taxpayer money to provide processing and transportation services and infrastructure to facilitate the migration of illegal aliens into the interior of the country.

While the investigation was limited both in time and number of facilities, the results show that the national impacts of mass illegal immigration are extensive. Devices that were at these NGO facilities later appeared in all but one congressional district in the United States. The investigation confirms that Biden border crisis affects all of America and that NGOs are playing a central role in the mass resettlement of illegal aliens in the United States. Worse, this flow of illegal immigration helps enable cartels to bring terrorists, criminals, and deadly drugs like fentanyl into the United States.

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