Customs and Border Protection Report: BORTAC

Border Patrol Tactical Unit training offers agents a chance to prepare for high risk operations.

"We train for encountering armed individuals, sometimes serving warrants, high risk vehicle assaults, anything that may be a little above and beyond what normal border patrol agents do," explained BORTAC Superisor, C. Hamer.

Members of the unit also work intelligence based threats, reconnaissance and surveillance| so training is crucial.

"We do a lot of specialty training at the range, a lot of live fire exercises responding to dangerous situations, high risk situations where they might be an agent that's been injured... we can respond to help extract them. Any type of incursion from the south side from the Mexican side where there is a report of armed individuals coming across, we can respond to that," said Hamer

The grueling training course to become a BORTAC agent is designed to mirror aspects of Special Operations Forces and at least for one member| that's exactly what he was looking for.

I decided to join BORTAC because when I was in the military it was something I always wanted to do and I didn't really get a shot at doing any special forces training when I was in the military, said M. Neuburn, a BORTAC Agent

Becoming a member is no easy feat, candidates undergo weeks of intense exercises in small unit and defensive tactics, operation planning, advanced weapon skills, and airmobile operations.

"First of all, you have to be highly motivated, it's not something that everybody is chosen for, you have to volunteer for it, then you have to go through a selection process which can be quite lengthly, there is a lot of training involved... it's a very difficult process," said Hamer.

Upon graduation, BORTAC operators utilize advanced techniques in weapons and tactics to enhance the work of front line agents in securing our borders.