Have drug seizures at the border increased under Biden?

Wednesday, May 25, 2022
By Lisa Freedland

As it is impossible to accurately assess drug smuggling given that successful drug smuggling isn't caught, law enforcement tracks seizures at the border as a proxy. Customs and Border Protection data show that overall drug seizures decreased in 2021 relative to 2020.

CBP reported 914,000 drug seizures in 2021 compared to 1.1 million drug seizures in 2020. In the first four months of 2022, seizures were lower than in those same months in 2020 and 2021.

With regard to fentanyl seizures in particular, numbers have been high under Biden. However, the spike began under president Trump in the latter months of 2020.

Biden's most recent drug control strategy, released in April, recommends investing $300 million each in CBP and the Drug Enforcement Administration. It also proposes strengthening domestic law enforcement, increasing collaboration with international partners to disrupt drug supply chains, and cutting off the financial activities of drug traffickers.

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