The lawsuit claims the migrants were lured into crossing state lines with false promises.
Venezuelan migrants who were transferred to the luxurious island of Martha’s Vineyard, in Massachusetts, filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and his Secretary of Transportation for participating in a “fraudulent and discriminatory plan” to relocate them.
The suit, filed in federal court in Boston, alleges the migrants were told they would be flown to Boston or Washington, “which was completely untrue,” and were lured with benefits such as $10 McDonald’s gift certificates. .
“No human being should be used as a political pawn,” said Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, executive director of Lawyers for Civil Rights, which is seeking class action status in the lawsuit filed on behalf of several of the migrants who were aboard the last week’s flights and Alianza Americas, a network of advocacy groups.
“It is opportunistic for activists to use illegal immigrants for political speech,” said Taryn Fenske, director of communications for DeSantis, in a statement released late Tuesday.
The lawsuit, which also names Transportation Secretary Jared W. Perdue as a defendant, alleges the migrants were lured across state lines with false promises, an argument some Democratic officials are using to demand a federal investigation.
On Monday, Javier Salazar, the police chief of Bexar County, which includes San Antonio, opened an investigation into the flights, but the Democrat-elect did not mention what laws were broken. California Governor Gavin Newsom and US Rep. Joaquin Castro, whose district includes San Antonio, have asked the Justice Department to open an investigation.
Speculation abounded Tuesday among government officials, advocates and journalists about DeSantis’s next move, in keeping with the wow factor he and another Republican governor, Greg Abbott of Texas, have tried to achieve by busing migrants. and by plane to Democratic strongholds with little or no advance notice.
Asked Tuesday about speculation that DeSantis might send migrants to his home state of Delaware, President Joe Biden responded, “You should come visit us. We have a beautiful coastline.”
DeSantis declined to confirm speculation, based on flight tracking software, that a new migrant transfer had taken place. He again defended his decision to take some 50 Venezuelans to Martha’s Vineyard, saying his decisions were completely voluntary and, without proof, that they were in dire condition when Florida got involved.
Have the information instantly on your cell phone. Join the Diario Primicia group on WhatsApp through the following link: https://chat.whatsapp.com/EUWIEdcF1YP9JwwC753Gc7
We are also on Telegram as @DiarioPrimicia, join here:https://t.me/diarioprimicia