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A look at U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 3 2012 4:36 p.m. MDT

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Ross D. Franklin, Associated Press
Though U.S. Customs was established in 1789, it wasn't until 1853 that the U.S. Customs Border Patrol program was put in place.

"U.S. Customs Border Patrol is established when Treasury Secretary authorized the Collectors of Customs to hire customs mounted inspectors for patrol duty along U.S. land borders," according to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection timeline.

In 1875, immigration regulation becomes a federal responsibility under a mandate by the Supreme Court, according to the timeline.

Congress established customs agents and special agents in 1879. These employees "were to detect and prevent fraud of the customs revenue," said the timeline.

Jan. 1920 through Dec. 1933, was a hard time for U.S. borders and seacoasts. During that time 20 officers lost their lives from the U.S. Customs Border Patrol division. Also, four inspectors from the U.S. Immigration Service and 24 officers in the U.S. Immigration Service Border Patrol also lost their lives while on the job, according to the timeline.
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