2013 was a big year for U.S. District Judge Robert Brack.
The Senate recently confirmed Ken Gonzales as the second resident U.S. District Judge in Las Cruces.
“He was pretty happy…but I was probably the second happiest guy in the country,” said Brack.
Brack and Gonzales will split the criminal docket right down the middle.
“When indictments come in, he’ll take half of them, I’ll take half. We’ll do the same with the immigration docket.”
Judge Brack now has help in the form of a second judge, but he says prosecutions are still rising…in 2013, there were 21 percent more than the year before.
One reason is agents now prosecute 100 percent of those who cross illegally. About 10 years ago, it was only 3 percent.
The only reason the number prosecuted is not higher today is the total number of crossings dropped significantly.
Brack has gained attention for being one of the busiest judges in America…he sees it as an opportunity to shed light on immigration.
“I see young husbands and fathers they’re on their way back to Mexico and in many instances, back is a misnomer…they don’t have a home there. They don’t have family there.”
Brack says he doesn’t know why politicians can’t stay focused on immigration reform long enough to do something about it, because in his case, he can’t ignore it.
“Everyday that it doesn’t happen…everyday, families are being torn apart.”