REPORT: Feds say no discrimination in migrant caravan prosecutions

BY ANNETA GRIFFEE / MAY 15, 2018 /

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The Border Patrol targeted the migrant caravan for enforcement but didn’t go after them because they were from Central American countries, the Trump administration said in new court filings this week meant to push back against accusations of illegal discriminatory prosecutions.

Border Patrol agents said they nabbed a total of two dozen people in the San Diego area who jumped the border and claimed to have been part of the caravan at some point.

Of those, 11 faced charges: two from El Salvador, two from Guatemala, one from Mexico and six from Honduras. The other 13 did not face charges, either because they were juveniles, were mothers traveling with their children, or, in one case, a woman who claimed to be eight and a half months pregnant.

The article goes on to state the following:

Attorneys for the caravan participants had argued the administration was engaged in selective prosecution, targeting migrants from Central America while ignoring those from countries such as India who were caught alongside them.

The government countered that the key factor in its charging decisions was that someone was part of the caravan, regardless of country. While the caravan was mostly made up of people from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, one of the prosecutions was against a Mexican who claimed to have been part of the caravan.

“At no point did Border Patrol target citizens of Central American countries for prosecution because of their nationality. To the contrary, Border Patrol sought prosecution of caravan participants with the objective of deterring other caravan participants from illegally entering the United States, while also taking into consideration humanitarian concerns,” Ryan Yamasaki, assistant chief patrol agent for the Border Patrol in San Diego, said in a declaration to the court.

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