Immigrant-Rights Groups Claim "Systemic Abuse" of Unaccompanied Immigrant Children

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CBP


Immigrant-rights groups including the American Civil Liberties Union claim to have documented more than 100 cases of unaccompanied immigrant children being abused by U.S. border authorities.

Customs and Border Protection and Border Patrol are supposed to have these minors processed and turned over to Health and Human Services within 72 hours, but these immigrant-rights groups claim it's often taking longer than that, and children have been abused along the way.

See also:
-Tucson Border Patrol Sector Earns Most Complaints of Abuse, but Punishment Is Rare

The National Immigrant Justice Center, Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project, Americans for Immigrant Justice, Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project and the ACLU Border Litigation Project filed a complaint outlining 116 cases of alleged abuse of children in the custody of Border Patrol or CBP. Representatives for these groups said this morning that such abuses aren't new, but are coming to the forefront with the sudden surge of children showing up without parents to the nation's southern border. These particular cases all took place within the last year.

"These children's stories are horrific," says ACLU attorney James Lyall.

Many of the cases are described individually in the complaint filed with the Department of Homeland Security. The complaint summarizes:
Over 80 percent of these children reported inadequate food and water by CBP officials. Approximately half of the children described the denial of medical care. More than half reported experiencing some form of verbal abuse, while approximately one in four reported physical abuse ranging from sexual assault to punching, kicking, and use of stress positions as punishment. One in three reported CBP officials confiscated and did not return money and/or belongings, and approximately 15 percent reported being forcibly separated from family members. Approximately 70 percent of these children were detained by CBP beyond the 72-hour statutory limit.
For the most part, the individual complaints don't identify the facilities where these alleged abuses took place. Ashley Huebner, an attorney with the National Immigrant Justice Center, says most of the children didn't know where they were.

However, some of the children who were in the border authorities' custody at different times had very similar complaints.

For example, three different teenagers reported that CBP officers made comments or gestures signaling that the airplane that would transfer them would crash. From the complaint:
E.M. is a 17-year-old child who fled Guatemala after she was raped and impregnated and her family subsequently threatened. E.M. was kidnapped after entering the United States and forced to work before an uncle paid for her release. After E.M. was apprehended near Falfurrias, Texas, she was detained in a CBP holding facility. An officer with the nickname "Mala Cara," or "Bad Face" told E.M., "Welcome to hell." and repeatedly addressed her as "princess." After E.M. complained to other officials, "Mala Cara" treated E.M. even worse. When E.M. was finally transferred to ORR custody, "Mala Cara" threatened, "We're going to put you on a plane, and I hope it explodes. That would be the happiest day of my life."

B.O., a 14-year-old boy, was held for five days at three different CBP detention centers. During that time, he was unable to sleep because the lights were never turned off. As he was being taken to the airport, a CBP official told B.O. and other children that he hoped the children's plane would crash. The official made hand movements and noises to simulate a plane taking off and then crashing.

K.M. is a 15-year-old girl who was detained in CBP custody for four days. The CBP official to whom she disclosed her age accused her of lying. CBP officials did not provide K.M. with food until a full day after she arrived in custody, and denied her the opportunity to bathe. In the hielera, CBP officials woke K.M. and the other children every 30 minutes as they tried to sleep, and K.M. could not keep track of the time because the lights were always left on. CBP officials called her and the other children "sluts," "parasites," and "dogs." When she told an official that the water tasted of chlorine, he replied, "Stupid girl, if you don't like the water put your hands in the bathroom sink and drink from there." She and other girls asked for blankets and were told, "You sluts, why did you come to the U.S.? This is not a five-star hotel. You think because you came to this country we are going to treat you well?" When K.M. and the other detained girls told the CBP officials they were hungry, they cursed and said, "We don't sell food here." A CBP official entered the holding cell eating a Snickers bar and said, "Look sluts, look at me eat." The official added, "Hopefully when you are transferred the plane will crash and you will all die." Officials pressured K.M. to sign a deportation order, telling her that she would be deported anyway. Officials transported K.M. in three-point shackles, which she describes as being painfully tight. Officials also placed two young pregnant women in three-point shackles, despite their cries and objections that the shackles caused abdominal pain.
Some of the organizations involved in this complaint plan on taking some of these cases to court, but acknowledge that route is time consuming. The purpose of the complaint, representatives said this morning, was to try to get this alleged culture of abuse changed now.

The complaint also outlines some suggested remedies that DHS can implement at Border Patrol and CBP, but there's some worry that this complaint will be ignored. The ACLU and others have long called for more oversight at these agencies, and Lyall pointed a recent report by another immigrant-rights group found the vast majority of complaints against Border Patrol don't result in significant action against the offending agent, if any action is taken at all.

The complaint filed today can be found below:



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31 comments
goodguess
goodguess

There is NO excuse for CHILD ABUSE, period. And at the hands of US Government Agencies? That is foul beyond words.

FRONTERA
FRONTERA

After my last critical post on the Border , I received  a phone call the next day from a border town  sheriff's office . This stuff is true down there. I kept telling myself don't put your ass on the line, these old boys play dirty like DEA-joe arpio. But I remember my late father ( jet fighter pilot )andtry to speak up  for injustice.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Desert Racist Wasteland 

arizonanewtimes.com
arizonanewtimes.com

The illegals deserve all the abuse that comes their way.  Did they expect to all be housed in a Hilton Hotel when they broke into this country?  They all made their bed so now they have to lie in it.  They should have thought about the consequences before they illegally came here.  When things get more crowded there should be calls for those illegals to be euthanized just like dogs and cats are when animal shelters get overwhelmed.  We cannot afford to keep them.

preciouspuss
preciouspuss

People call me princess all of the time and I love it and never consider it as abuse.

john043012
john043012 topcommenter

The cost associated with this Obama manufactured invasion has been estimated to cost the taxpayer's 2.2 billion dollars this year alone.

ipolitics123
ipolitics123

Illegal immigrants complaining about their treatment are like party crashers complaining about the food.   You don't like it here?  Go home.

john043012
john043012 topcommenter

Its terrible these bundles of joy are having such a tuff experience in the United States.

james8394
james8394

Things have become very mean in the last 12 or so years. Weren't people taught manners when they were young? Yes, I'm talking about Americans. 

eric.nelson745
eric.nelson745 topcommenter

We all know there are badies in CBP and ICE. I hope the aforementioned abuses are not happening and/or are greatly exaggerated. In any case, they need to be thoroughly investigated. The quicker we can send corrupt agents packing and/or have them criminally charged, the better. Obviously.

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

What "abuses" are these people suffering?

They get food, shelter, a warm bed, etc. Hell, they're treated better than our soldiers.

jpnightrain
jpnightrain

I heard the CBP was even trying to feed flour tortillas to some of the Hondurans who are only used to eating corn tortillas.  The horror.

Cozz
Cozz topcommenter

Border Patrol, the US's very own government Nazi SS unit.

sallyforth
sallyforth

@DonkeyHotay you haven't seen anything yet, asshat. just wait until the negroes fuck their way to more than 4-5% of the population, then things will get started for real.

jbunny
jbunny

@arizonanewtimes.com 

You are talking about children. The teenagers that arrive have most likely fled from horrible circumstances or have been abandoned by family. The small children have no say in how they got here. No child on US soil (or anywhere, for that matter) deserves to be abused at the hands of a government agency. It's just wrong, no matter what your position is on immigration. If they need to be detained and deported, it can be done humanely. I can't believe you are advocating the abuse of defenseless children. This is a human issue, not a political one.

goodguess
goodguess

@preciouspuss   I assume that's because you  don't know about the peter principle, princess, sweetie, honey, sugar plum......read up.

Original-American
Original-American

@preciouspuss How about a finger shoved up your asshole to probe for illegal contraband and drugs? Or opening your pussy lips in the presence of male officers in the background? Or being called sluts and whore, while you drink Chlorine and sleeping on hard concrete floors without a blanket or pillow? Or not receiving medical treatment for that yeast infection, small pox, and such? 


That's called abuse. Had these kids not come here, they would not have experienced such abuses here.

james8394
james8394

and these comments illustrate my point

Original-American
Original-American

@james8394 So where are the "manners" of CENTRAL Americans who are driving out it's own people? The narco drug lords who kill thousand of innocents, causing an exodus of unlawful aliens to illegally enter this country?


Yes, I'm talking about CENTRAL Americans and Mexicans.

john043012
john043012 topcommenter

@eric.nelson745 The quicker we can find the parents the better. As far as them appearing for their court dates it isn't going to happen but what will happen are these children will start popping up in school districts and once they enroll it wont be that difficult to track them down and get them to court.

jbunny
jbunny

@MaskedMagician1967 

No child should be denied adequate food and water, held in painfully tight shackles, told they should die in a plane crash, and called names such as sluts, whores, parasites, dogs. Or be forcibly separated from their families, or be coerced into signing forms when they aren't even of age to sign for themselves. We're talking about kids here.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@sallyforth ... did your mother raise you to be a lowlife racist scumbag, or is that a skill you developed on your own?

john043012
john043012 topcommenter

@ipolitics123 the news media's in those countries are dishing out wrong information you would think our king would at the very least get on T.V. and explain his policy and what they can expect if they do decide to illegally enter.

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