Volunteer Arrested After Border Agents Seen Dumping Water

A barrel with water stands on a dirt road near the US/Mexico border outside Eagle Pass, Texas, on February 22, 2017. Attention Editors, this image is part of an ongoing AFP photo project documenting the life on the t... A barrel with water stands on a dirt road near the US/Mexico border outside Eagle Pass, Texas, on February 22, 2017. Attention Editors, this image is part of an ongoing AFP photo project documenting the life on the two sides of the US/Mexico border simultaneously by two photographers traveling for ten days from California to Texas on the US side and from Baja California to Tamaulipas on the Mexican side between February 13 and 22, 2017. You can find all the images with the keyword : BORDERPROJECT2017 on our wire and on www.afpforum.com / AFP / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images) MORE LESS
|
January 23, 2018 10:55 am
JOIN TPM FOR JUST $1
PHOENIX (AP) — A volunteer for an organization that tries to prevent immigrants from dying in the Arizona desert was arrested several hours after the group released videos showing Border Patrol agents kicking over water bottles left for those crossing into the U.S. illegally.

Scott Daniel Warren, 35, with the group No More Deaths, faces a federal charge of harboring two people in the country illegally. His arrest last week came after Border Patrol agents conducted surveillance on a building where two immigrants were given food, water, beds and clean clothes, according to federal court records.

Group volunteer Caitlin Deighan stopped short of calling the arrest retaliation but said it looks suspicious to have charged Warren so close to the release of the videos.

“We see it as an escalation and criminalization of aid workers,” Deighan said Monday.

The Border Patrol didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

William Walker, an attorney for Warren, said his client’s actions were not criminal.

“This is a humanitarian aid worker trying to save lives,” Walker said.

No More Deaths last week gave news organizations videos taken between 2010 and 2017, mostly by cameras at its desert camp. In one clip, a Border Patrol agent kicked over five water jugs meant to supply immigrants. In another, an agent pours gallons of water on the ground.

In 2005, two group volunteers were arrested after they drove three immigrants from a desert location to a Tucson church to get medical attention from a doctor and nurse. The indictment was eventually dismissed by a federal judge.

No More Deaths is a coalition of religious organizations, human rights advocates and individuals who provide food, water and medical assistance to immigrants crossing the Arizona desert from Mexico.

Immigrants who sneak into the United States through that terrain face many dangers, including walking for several days in the scorching heat.

Thousands have died crossing the border since the mid-1990s, when heightened enforcement in San Diego and El Paso, Texas, pushed traffic into Arizona’s deserts. In recent years, south Texas has become the busiest corridor for illegal crossings and also the most deadly.

___

Follow Jacques Billeaud at www.twitter.com/jacquesbilleaud . His work can be found at https://www.apnews.com/search/jacques%20billeaud. 

Comments
Masthead Masthead
Editor & Publisher:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Senior Editor:
Special Projects Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporter:
Newswriters:
Front Page Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Manager & General Counsel:
Executive Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Publishing Associate:
Front-End Developer:
Senior Designer: