Almost 300 of the undocumented workers apprehended during a series of raids in Mississippi have been released, CBS News is reporting.
The action came after nearly 700 undocumented immigrants were picked up at seven food processing plants in Mississippi on Wednesday. “Humanitarian grounds” were cited for the reason behind most of the releases.
"Preliminarily, it appears that approximately 30 detained aliens were released yesterday on humanitarian grounds at the individual sites where they were initially encountered," said a statement released Thursday to NPR by the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of Mississippi. "Another 270 detained aliens were released after being processed by (Homeland Security Investigations) at the National Guard base in Pearl and returned to the place where they were originally encountered."
Amelia McGowan, an attorney for the Mississippi Center for Justice, said the large-scale operation will still have an impact on many families.
"Everybody is in removal proceedings now,” she told CBS News. “They are facing that process and we're trying to get them legal help."
And she noted that all apprehended workers are served with notices to appear in court, regardless of whether they are released.
“As part of HSI procedures pursuant to this operation, if HSI encountered two alien parents with minor children at home, HSI released one of the parents on humanitarian grounds and returned that individual to the place from which they were arrested,” the Justice Department said in a statement, according to the New York Post. “HSI similarly released any single alien parent with minor children at home on humanitarian grounds.”
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