Photos show border militias moving across Texas

Monday, July 28, 2014
By Paul Martin

By Kolten Parker
Chron.com
July 28, 2014

SAN ANTONIO – Photos showing dozens of members of the militia groups on the U.S.-Mexico border carrying semi-automatic rifles and wearing masks, camouflage and tactical gear provide one of the first glimpses into the group’s activities on the border.

Members of the militia groups, who say they have 10 active “teams” along the state’s southern border, are seen at campsites, walking along the Rio Grande River, pointing rifles and pistols out of frame and flipping off the camera in the photos obtained by the San Antonio Express-News.

A spokesperson for the group provided the photos under the condition that members’ faces be blurred because of fear of being identified by “cartel and gang members.”

One of the photos shows a Border Patrol agent leaning through an armed militia member’s vehicle window and pointing on a map. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection earlier this month strongly rebuked the group’s presence on the border but did not return multiple requests for comment regarding the photo.

Gov. Rick Perry, who last week ordered 1,000 Texas National Guard members to the border, declined to comment specifically on the militia groups through a spokesman but said he is “leading to secure the border.”

The groups, including Oathkeepers, Three Percenters and Patriots, began recruiting and organizing more than a month ago, as national media outlets began focusing on an influx of Central American immigrants illegally crossing the border, including more than 50,000 unaccompanied minors.

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