San Diego congressmen Darrell Issa and Duncan D. Hunter have joined fellow Republican Ken Calvert of Riverside County in introducing a bill, HR 5079, that would allow for the expedited repatriation of unaccompanied children to their home country, including minors from countries that do not share a direct border with the United States.
“The president’s unilateral actions have sent a misleading message that resulted in tens of thousands of children making a perilous journey to our country with the belief they would be allowed to stay,” North County Rep. Issa said Friday in a statement.
“The best resolution to this humanitarian crisis is the safe return of these children to their families and country of origin. By promptly returning them home to their loved ones it sends a clear message that will discourage other children from making this dangerous trip.”
Issa’s office said that current immigration law, under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, allows expedited repatriation of unaccompanied minors to countries that border the United States.
Under HR 5079, the executive branch is permitted to enter into agreements with any country to “address the repatriation of unaccompanied minors in the current crisis and any future immigration crises that may arise.”
In fiscal year 2014 the number of unaccompanied minors entering the U.S. illegally is expected to reach 60,000, a ninefold increase from three years ago, with an additional increase of 60,000 to 90,000 expected to illegally enter next year, Issa’s office said.
On July 2, Issa and several dozen others in Congress sent President Obama a letter that calls on him to end what they called the unilateral executive action known as “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)” and to make an explicit public commitment that newly arrived illegal immigrants will not receive legal status.
“As our country faces an unprecedented surge in the arrival of unaccompanied alien children (UACs) at our southwestern border, we call on you to immediately end the failed policies that encourage young individuals to put themselves in peril, leave their home countries, and make a long and dangerous journey to enter our country illegally,” the letter said.
Earlier this week, it was reported that most of the people accused of using force to free an arrested immigration protester at the Murrieta Border Patrol station have posted bail, as the nation talked about last week’s outrage against buses carrying women and children who may be illegally in the United States.
Murrieta police reported the Border Patrol station was quiet Sunday, with 10 protesters quietly milling about amongst TV trucks. Barricades and parking restrictions remained up in the area.
Five people were arrested Friday afternoon, when a law officer was attacked as he arrested a possible assault suspect.
They were charged with lynching, which under California’s 150-year-old penal code is defined as freeing a lawfully arrested person during a riot. Janet Mathieson, 22, of Claremont, was also suspected of battery on a police officer.
Police allege Mathieson jumped on the back of a Murrieta officer Friday, when he was arresting someone linked to an assault that occurred away from the protest site. Mathieson became uncooperative during questioning and was about to be handcuffed for allegedly obstructing the officer in the course of his investigation, police said.
At that point, Pouyan Bokaei, 33, of Maryland, allegedly tried freeing Mathieson and, and the officer momentarily let go of her when he tried arresting Bokaei.
Jessica Rey, 25, of Menifee, and Salvador Chavez, 24, of Los Angeles, were also brought in for suspicion of lynching after the fracas.
There was no jail record Sunday for Bokaei, but the records show all four others were freed Saturday after each posted $10,000 bail.
All of the suspects arrested were booked for suspicion of obstructing a peace officer, a misdemeanor, but they were also booked on suspicion of lynching, the obscure felony charge.
One other person, Larry Spencer, a 54-year-old Hemet resident, had also been arrested earlier during Friday’s protests, but he was cited and released on a misdemeanor count of disobeying an officer.
The arrests highlighted the anger and emotion that brewed throughout Independence Day as protesters either sympathetic towards, or against, undocumented immigrants waited for a trio of buses carrying 140 detainees to enter the federal station in Murrieta. The buses never arrived and were diverted to San Ysidro.
Friday’s protests followed one the previous Tuesday where angry people blocked the buses from entering the federal facility. The protests were sparked when federal officials announced earlier in the week that the buses would be arriving from Texas every 72 hours.
Meanwhile, the Murrieta developments were the talk of the nation on the Sunday morning talk shows.
— City News Service contributed to this report.