To the Editor:
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s reckless decision to deceive 50 poor and homeless migrants from Latin America into traveling, at Florida’s citizen’s expense, to Martha’s Vineyard, by misleading them into thinking that jobs and housing awaited them, was not merely an outrageous and villainous deed. It may also have constituted a federal crime.
Section 8 U.S.C.§1324 of the federal criminal code provides in relevant part:
(a) Criminal penalties.
(A)Any person who-
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(II) knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien has come to, entered, or remains in the United States in violation of law, transports, or moves or attempts to transport or move such alien within the United States by means of transportation or otherwise, in furtherance of such violation of law; or
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(II) aids or abets the commission of any of the preceding acts,
shall be punished as provided in Subparagraph (B).
(B) A person who violates subparagraph (A) shall for each alien in respect to whom such a violation occurs-
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(II) in the case of a violation of subparagraph (A)(II),*** or (v)(II), be fined under title 18 United States Code, imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both….
The many migrants who are now on the Vineyard and are being aided in their sad plight by governments, social services, religious institutions and individuals, are the victims of, and witnesses to, the foregoing crimes, and they should promptly be interviewed by federal law enforcement agents to gather evidence in support of the federal prosecution of the perpetrators of this atrocity.