Concertina wire that was installed under the Trump administration last year to reinforce southern border barriers is being stolen and repurposed by homeowners in Tijuana, Mexico, for protection amid a crime surge in the city, The San Diego Union-Tribune reports. 

Officials in Tijuana have reportedly confirmed the arrests of 15 to 20 people involved in the theft at the border. 


Officials said some residents in the Colonia Libertad neighborhood in Tijuana were found to have wire identical to that installed on the border fence being repurposed as an extra layer of protection along their property.

“I don’t actually live here in this house, so I have no idea how that wire got here,” one unnamed woman told the Union-Tribune.

The arrests come as the city reportedly grapples with a historic rise in homicides. The city was ranked as the world’s most violent in a recent report released by the Citizens' Council for Public Security and Criminal Justice.

Marco Antonio Sotomayor Amezcua, the secretary of public safety in Tijuana, said local officials learned about “the stealing of the concertina [wire] from United States authorities who have asked us for help through the liaison staff” in a statement seen by the local paper.

Director Reynaldo González Mora, who currently heads the city’s border liaison unit, said that the people arrested “were mainly Mexican [citizens], and most were people who have been deported from the United States, and people who have problems with drug addiction and live mostly on the street,” according to the Union-Tribune.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpImpeachment? Not so fast without missing element of criminal intent Feds say marijuana ties could prevent immigrants from getting US citizenship Trump approval drops to 2019 low after Mueller report's release: poll MORE boasted about the additional layer of border security after the wire was installed along the border back in November.