Word Spreads: If You Make It to the U.S. Border, You're Free to Go In
Years of mixed messages from Washington, D.C. about immigration and border enforcement has led to scores of immigrant children pouring across the border. An epidemic of gang violence sweeping Central America, coupled with the Obama administration hamstringing Immigration and Customs Enforcement, has let the word spread that children of illegal aliens will be set free if they come to the United States (via Washington Post):
Driven by a mix of rumor, fact and political hyperbole, word has spread through Latino communities in the Washington area and elsewhere that if their children reach the U.S. border alone, they will be allowed to go free.
The families' hopes are partly justified, because officials have speeded up processing the new arrivals to relieve crowded shelters and release as many as possible to relatives or guardians. Unlike children from Mexico, who can be sent back across the border right away, the law allows minors arriving from more distant countries to be sheltered and then handed over to a sponsor while awaiting court hearings.
The greater Washington region, with more than 400,000 residents of Central American origin, is one of several metropolitan areas in the U.S. where the newly arrived minors are most likely to be sent.
An illegal alien who sells tortillas in Washington wired $6,000 to guides in order to get her teenage children out of their gang-riddled neighborhood in Honduras. They're being held in a detention facility in Phoenix, Arizona.