California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Attorney General Rob Bonta have accused the state of Florida and Gov. Ron DeSantis of kidnapping illegal immigrants and sending them by plane to Sacramento.
The Los Angeles Times reported more than a dozen migrants from South America arrived in California’s state capital on Saturday on a chartered flight from New Mexico.
“While this is still under investigation, we can confirm these individuals were in possession of documentation purporting to be from the government of the State of Florida,” Bonta said in a news release. “While we continue to collect evidence, I want to say this very clearly: State-sanctioned kidnapping is not a public policy choice, it is immoral and disgusting.”
In a tweet Monday, Newsom, who has been picking fights with conservative governors on Twitter, especially DeSantis, wrote: “@RonDeSantis, you small, pathetic man. This isn't Martha's Vineyard. Kidnapping charges?”
In September, DeSantis arranged for 50 migrants from Venezuela to be flown from San Antonio to Massachusetts resort island Martha’s Vineyard, part of a $12 million Florida program to transport illegal immigrants to sanctuary destinations and to protest President Joe Biden’s border security policies.
Newsom provided a link and posted a screenshot of a section of California’s kidnapping law that states: “Every person who, being out of this state, abducts or takes by force or fraud any person contrary to the law of the place where that act is committed, and brings, sends, or conveys that person within the limits of this state, and is afterwards found within the limits thereof, is guilty of kidnapping.”
“We are investigating the circumstances by which these individuals were brought to California,” Bonta said. “We are also evaluating potential criminal or civil action against those who transported or arranged for the transport of these vulnerable immigrants.”
The Los Angeles Times reported the contractor for the flight was Vertol Systems Co., which coordinated the flights that took the Venezuelans from San Antonio to Martha’s Vineyard.
“This is Gov. DeSantis, this is his baby, this is his project, his fingerprints are all over it,” Bonta told The Los Angeles Times. “The governor signed it, the Legislature approved to fund it in the budget, and they hired Vertol Systems Co., a vendor, to carry out the work.
“It’s DeSantis being exactly who he is and advertising to the world that he is petty, little ... and full of political stunts that hurt, harm and abuse and exploit people to try and get cheap political points. It’s wrong.”
Newsmax reached out to DeSantis and Vertol Systems Co. for comment.
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