In November, federal judge Emmet Sullivan ruled that the Trump administration couldn’t expel migrants who were minors if they were brought into custody without parents or legal guardians. But today CBS News is reporting that didn’t fully stop the practice:
U.S. border officials have expelled at least 66 unaccompanied migrant children without a court hearing or asylum interview since a federal judgethem to stop the practice, the Trump administration conceded on Saturday.
Pres. Trump’s top Customs and Border Protection official addressed the expulsions today, calling them a “mistake”:https://t.co/ZMG5tirpOg
— Camilo Montoya-Galvez (@camiloreports) December 14, 2020
The children expelled after Sullivan issued his decision were between 12 and 17 years old, according to the declarations. One of them turned out to be a U.S. citizen who was ultimately allowed to enter the country after being expelled, (William) Ferrara (the head of the Office of Field Operations) said in his declaration.
“The widespread failure to comply with the injunction is deeply concerning and we hope the illegally expelled children will not be harmed before they can be found, if they can be found,” Lee Gelernt, the American Civil Liberties Union lawyer challenging the expulsions, told CBS News.
VOX adds that Border Patrol chief Rodney Scott said in a court filing Saturday that “Nine of the children later tried to reenter and were processed in accordance with the court order.”
He said that his office has since reiterated the agency guidance to all of its field offices and sector chiefs and has contacted Mexican authorities in order to locate the affected children, but has not had success so far. He cited in-person training challenges due to the pandemic and said that “formal discipline is being actively considered” for the officials responsible, who were apparently “unaware of the guidance.”
Watch more above from CBS News.