SAN DIEGO — The Border Patrol will fly nearly 300 Central American migrants from south Texas to California for processing, an official said Saturday, as the government seeks to ease the workload on agents at the nation's busiest corridor for illegal crossings.
There will be two flights Monday with 140 passengers each -- one bound for San Diego and one for El Centro, about 100 miles east of San Diego, said Paul Beeson, chief of the Border Patrol's San Diego Sector.
The two flights were expected to continue every three days, Beeson told The Associated Press, but it's unclear for how long. They will be mostly for families with young children but also carry adults. There will be no unaccompanied children.
The flights to California are the government's latest response to a surge of Central Americans entering Texas' Rio Grande Valley, where the Border Patrol has made more than 174,000 arrests since Oct. 1. Most are from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency will decide whether the Central Americans remain in custody or are released while they are in deportation proceedings. ICE spokeswoman Lauren Mack declined to comment on how the agency will respond.