Hundreds of Central American migrants will be flown from Texas to California for U.S. Border Patrol processing, beginning on Tuesday, officials confirmed.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is again preparing to fly adults with children from the Rio Grande Valley to San Diego, Murrieta and El Centro, according to a release from CBP officials.
The first group of 140 people should arrive in Murrieta around noon Tuesday, with more flights coming every three days, Border Patrol union representative Gabe Pacheco told NBC 7.
Others will be transferred to Laredo and El Paso in Texas in an effort to relieve congestion in the south Texas sectors.
When news of the prospective transfer broke last week, Border Patrol officials soon scrapped their plan after swift public push back.
But Friday, CBP’s Media Division Director Michael Friel announced the transfer had been reinstated.
Once they have arrived, agents will process the apprehended families for removal and turn them over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, who will decide on a case-by-case basis if they will remain in custody, be deported or be released.
Friel’s statement said transfers between Border Patrol sectors happen regularly to help the CBP manage its processing flow.
Border Patrol agents have seen an overwhelming influx of migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border at Texas’ Rio Grande Valley.
Since Oct. 1, agents have arrested more than 174,000 migrants from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, The Associated Press reported.
The federal agency is also searching for places to board about 50,000 unaccompanied minors who have inundated the border. As many as 700 of those children were apprehended by San Diego Border Patrol agents.
In response to that crisis, the federal government has launched a coordination group to leverage resources in the Departments of Defense, Justice, Health and Human Services, State and the General Services Administration.