Governor Jerry Brown has announced up to 400 California National Guard personnel will be dispatched throughout the state to “combat criminal gangs, human traffickers and illegal firearm and drug smugglers,” but “will not enforce immigration laws.”
Wednesday’s announcement is consistent with plans Brown revealed April 11 to dispatch troops along the U.S.-Mexico border, on the coastline, and within the state. A week prior, April 4, President Donald Trump requested up to 4,000 Guard troops from several states.
Though President Trump requested those troops to protect against unlawful border crossing and drug trafficking, and indicated he wanted them to help build a new border wall, Brown reiterated that California troops would strictly be involved in drug, gang, firearm, and human trafficking cases:
“California National Guard service members shall not engage in any direct law enforcement role nor enforce immigration laws, arrest people for immigration law violations, guard people taken into custody for alleged immigration violations, or support immigration law enforcement activities. California National Guard service members shall not participate in the construction of any new border barrier.”
The new personnel will join approximately 250 others already working throughout the state, according to the governor’s office.