Terror fears mount after arrests of border crossers linked to ISIS: 'We're headed for another 9/11'

Fears are growing that the migrant crisis at the southern border is compromising America’s national security after the arrests of eight suspected terrorists with ties to ISIS.

“The fact that these eight ISIS suspects got through the southern border really is a travesty,” retired U.S. Army Major General Dana Pittard told “Fox & Friends” Wednesday.

Eight Tajikistan nationals were busted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in conjunction with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force in three major cities, a federal source confirmed to Fox News.

The arrests took place in New York City, Los Angeles and Philadelphia in recent days, according to the source.

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All eight crossed the U.S. southern border illegally, and according to a federal source familiar with the sting, no derogatory information was initially flagged with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) during processing.

“It’s frightening, and we’re headed for another 9/11,” NYC Democratic Councilman Robert Holden told Fox News Wednesday.

“I predicted that, I think we should have a secure border. We should know who’s coming into our country – we don’t. And millions of migrants and illegal aliens have gotten through. So it’s a situation that we’re just, you know, really rolling the dice here.”

Pittard said the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force had these individuals on their radar and then ICE was able to make the arrest.

“ISIS-K is extremely dangerous as a terrorist organization, so we must all be vigilant,” Pittard warned.

“It really takes everybody watching in their communities for any suspicious activity and making sure they talk to law enforcement, police and anything that seems suspicious.”

Eight Tajikistan nationals with ties to ISIS were busted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in conjunction with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Joint Terrorism Task Force in New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles. (ICE)

Fox News’ source said after the suspected terrorists were released into the U.S., derogatory information was flagged with national security concerns, including the individuals’ ties to ISIS.

When contacted about the report by Fox News, the FBI and DHS sent a joint statement:

“Over the last few days, ICE agents arrested several non-citizens pursuant to immigration authorities. The actions were carried out in close coordination with the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces. The individuals arrested are detained in ICE custody pending removal proceedings. As the FBI and DHS have recently described in public and partner bulletins, the U.S. has been in a heightened threat environment. The FBI and DHS will continue working around the clock with our partners to identify, investigate, and disrupt potential threats to national security.”

The sting operation was first reported by the New York Post’s Jennie Taer.

According to Taer’s report, part of the investigation featured a wiretap which revealed one of the now-arrested individuals was talking about bombs.

FBI Director Christopher Wray warned last week of increased concerns of a “coordinated” terrorist attack in the United States during a Senate Appropriations subcommittee meeting.

Wray said there are concerns of a similar attack like the one conducted by ISIS-K in March at a concert hall in Russia.

Fox News’ Stepheny Price and Bill Melugin contributed to this report.

Elizabeth Heckman is a digital production assistant with Fox News.

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