A civil rights law firm filed a lawsuit against Governor Ron DeSantis and the State of Florida after 50 Venezuelan migrants were flown from Bexar County, Texas to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. Lawyers for Civil Rights in conjunction with Alianza Americas, a migrant-led nonprofit filed the suit claiming that the migrants were fraudulently coerced into being flown to Martha’s Vineyard.
The federal class action lawsuit also names Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Jared Perdue, and their accomplices as defendants in what some lawmakers have called human trafficking.
According to NPR, Alianza Americas state that Gov. DeSantis’s actions are part of pushing a “hate-filled agenda” targeting Latine migrants. This is something we have seen playing out from Republican lawmakers and governors for cheap political points.
In Texas, Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar announced a criminal investigation into how the migrants, who were lawfully seeking asylum, ended up on flights to Florida and then on to Massachusetts.
“The Bexar County Sheriff’s Office has opened an investigation into the migrants that were lured from the Migrant Resource Center, located in Bexar County, TX, and flown to Florida, where they were ultimately left to fend for themselves in Martha’s Vineyard, MA,” Sheriff Salazar said in a statement.
As part of the investigation, Sheriff Salazar states that the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office is working closely with the attorneys representing the migrant advocacy organizations. The Bexar County Sheriff’s Office is also prepared to work with federal agencies if the needs should arise in the matter.
Taryn Fenske, the spokesperson for Gov. DeSantis, released a statement condemning the nonprofit and law firm claiming them to be opportunistic for the sake of political theater.
“If these activists spent even a fraction of this time and effort at the border, perhaps some accountability would be brought to the Biden administration’s reckless border policies that entice illegal immigrants to make dangerous and often lethal journeys through Central America and put their lives in the hands of cartels and Coyotes,” reads part of the statement released by Fenske.