In July, Ortiz spoke to lawyers as part of a recorded deposition. The questioning was part of a lawsuit brought by the Florida Attorney General’s Office against the federal Department of Homeland Security.
Attorney General Ashley Moody and alleges that Biden’s agencies are not following federal law, which requires authorities to detain illegal migrants at the border until they are deported.
Ortiz met with lawyers on July 28 to discuss the situation at the border, according to Fox News. The conservative outlet obtained a recording of Ortiz’s deposition.
"In my experience, we have seen increases when there are no consequences," Ortiz said during the deposition, according to Fox News.
He added there is an assumption that if migrants are told they could be released, then there is an increase in traffic, Ortiz said.
A lawyer then asked if a memo issued under President Joe Biden said that migrants who illegally entered the U.S. believe they would be able to stay in America.
“Yes,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz said that he agreed with the idea that there have been “unprecedented numbers” of migrants who have entered the U.S. in the past year.
So far this year, there have been nearly 2 million migrant encounters at the U.S.-Mexico border, according to federal data. In July, there were nearly 200,000 encounters, a slight dip from the 207,000 in June, federal data showed.
The 2022 total is already 200,000 more than all of 2021. It’s also more than double the pre-pandemic total in 2019 when Donald Trump was president.
Roughly 1.3 million of the encounters were single adults. Only 2,485 encounters were of minors, but that is ahead of last year’s total of 2,108, according to federal data.
A lawyer also asked Ortiz during the deposition if the border is less safe today for Americans and illegal migrants, according to Fox News. “Yes” is all the chief could say.