San Diego

Report: California National Guardsmen Are Helping to Arrest Undocumented Immigrants

When California's Governor Jerry Brown authorized National Guardsmen to help along the U.S.-Mexico border in April, he specified they were not to handle custody duties or build border barriers.

Now, a report by the Voice of San Diego cites court filings showing that California National Guardsmen have been assisting Border Patrol agents in apprehending undocumented immigrants near the border. 

In May, National Guardsmen started training with the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol to be camera operators, radio dispatchers, and to fill other support roles.

After President Donald Trump sent National Guard troops to deploy to the U.S.-Mexico border to help federal authorities combat illegal immigration and drug trafficking, the California governor agreed to contribute 400 troops to go after drugs, guns and criminal gangs — not immigrants.

The idea was the National Guardsmen would free up badged agents and officers with the Department of Homeland Security for more investigative work.

Voice of San Diego reports that in a complaint filed regarding an August 1 incident, a National Guardsman alerted the CBP officer of several people running north from Mexico. 

In a second complaint regarding an August 2 arrest, a member of the National Guard operating video surveillance guided an arresting agent to two people west of the San Ysidro Port of Entry.

Read the Voice of San Diego article for details on the complaints and responses from the governor's office.

The National Guardsmen were expected to stay until at least Sept. 30.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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