Florida officials confirmed on Tuesday that Governor Ron DeSantis was behind two flights of migrants from New Mexico to Sacramento on Friday and Saturday.
The Florida Division of Emergency Management released footage of what it says are those migrants being transported on private aircraft, listening to music, signing waivers and appearing to be having a generally good time.
The transport of some three dozen migrants to California by Florida’s governor is the latest stunt in which asylum seekers that entered via the southern border have been relocated north to Democratic-led ‘sanctuary cities’.
‘We made it to California,’ said an alleged migrant in a selfie video which revealed behind him the turbo prop Dehavilland plane he and the others arrived on.
‘Thank God, very thankful to God,’ he said in Spanish while standing on the tarmac at Sacramento Executive Airport.
In a statement accompanying footage a spokesperson for the Florida Division of Emergency Management said the relocation was voluntary
In a segment of a video shared by Florida officials a man records himself disembarking from a plane and thanking God as he stands on the tarmac in what appears to be Sacramento Executive Airport
The video was released by the Florida Division of Emergency Management and uploaded to Rumble on Tuesday afternoon.
In an accompanying statement, Alecia Collins, the communications director for the Florida Division of Emergency Management, said the relocation was voluntary.
‘As you can see from this video, Florida’s voluntary relocation is precisely that – voluntary,’ wrote Collins.
It is not clear exactly who took the videos and pictures but some appear to have been captured by the alleged migrants themselves. None of the people shown in the video were unidentified and the video was without any description.
Other parts of the video show the alleged migrants cheering in the back of a bus, blasting music and showing peace signs with their hands.
At one point they are asked in Spanish: ‘At any point did you feel like you were treated poorly?’
‘No, they treated us very well,’ one person said in response.
Migrants were photographed throughout their transport from New Mexico to Sacramento
Californian officials said on Tuesday the transport of the migrants had been facilitated by Vertol Systems Company
Groups of alleged migrants were seen in the back of a bus blasting music and making the peace sign with their hands
The migrants, mostly from Venezuela but also from Colombia, arrived to Sacramento, California’s capital, in two flights. Pictured in video released by Florida officials shows people claimed to be migrants boarding an aircraft
‘Through verbal and written consent, these volunteers indicated they wanted to go to California,’ wrote Collins.
‘A contractor was present and ensured they made it safely to a 3rd-party NGO. The specific NGO, Catholic Charities, is used and funded by the federal government.’
Venezuelan and Colombian migrants who entered the US via Texas were transported by private plane to Sacramento, California, and left outside the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento.
Californian officials said on Tuesday the transport of the migrants had been facilitated by Vertol Systems Company, a private company that also arranged the planeloads of Venezuelan migrants from San Antonio to Martha’s Vineyard last year.
The migrants, mostly from Venezuela but also from Colombia, arrived to Sacramento, California’s capital, in two flights – the first carrying 16 on Friday and another on Monday carried 20.
More than a dozen Venezuelan and Colombian migrants who entered the US via Texas were transported by private plane to Sacramento, California, and left outside the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento, pictured
California Gov. Newsom tweeted Monday at Ron DeSantis saying ‘you small, pathetic man. This isn’t Martha’s Vineyard’
California Governor Gavin Newsom attacked DeSantis on Monday, calling him a ‘small, pathetic man’ and threatening on Twitter to bring kidnapping charges against his administration.
He said he was working with the California Department of Justice to establish if there was anything criminal about the orchestration of the flights, including who paid for the group’s travel and ‘whether the individuals orchestrating this trip misled anyone with false promises or have violated any criminal laws, including kidnapping.’
The California governor tweeted Monday at Ron DeSantis saying ‘you small, pathetic man. This isn’t Martha’s Vineyard.’ He referenced DeSantis’ decision to send a group of migrants to Massachusetts last year.
In the statement on Tuesday Florida’s Division of Emergency Management suggested that the criticism from Californian officials was unfair.
‘From left-leaning mayors in El Paso, Texas, and Denver, Colorado, the relocation of those illegally crossing the United States border is not new,’ read the statement.
‘But suddenly, when Florida sends illegal aliens to a sanctuary city, it’s false imprisonment and kidnapping.’