Earlier this year, the Department of Homeland Security argued that deportation proceedings should continue against a child because she “illegally entered the United States by wading across the Rio Grande River near the Presidio, Texas Port of Entry on January 15, 2015 with the intention of going to Dodge City, Kansas to reside and seek employment.”
The date of birth noted on the document was Jan. 4, 2015. The child was only 11 days old.
The American Immigration Lawyers Association, a 13,000-member group that has done extensive work representing women and children who fled Central American countries for the United States, filed a brief on June 2 telling a similar story of a 3-year-old boy from Honduras. According to Customs and Border Protection documents provided to HuffPost by the attorneys, the boy stated that he was coming to the U.S. to seek employment.
Included in the documents is a transcript of an interview, conducted in Spanish and translated to English. The questions are apparently being addressed to the little boy — for example, “Are your parents also natives and citizens of Honduras?” — and there is no indication that the child’s mother or anyone else is answering for him. On the final page, the border patrol agent reports that he asked the 3-year-old why he left his native country, and the child responded, “To look for work.”
The AILA brief, which was filed in a separate deportation case, argues that the interview “almost certainly never happened in the format in which it was memorialized.”