The teenage gang member recently arrested for the murder of a Maryland woman came to the U.S. under a special program that welcomes illegal immigrants under the age of 18 and provides them with a multitude of taxpayer benefits. The government refers to them as Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC) and hundreds of thousands have entered the country in the last few years. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is charged with caring for them and the agency spends millions of dollars annually to house, medically treat, entertain, and school UAC who come mainly from Central America. Under U.S. law illegal immigrant minors are almost always allowed to remain in the country and are quickly disbursed to a government-funded shelter upon arrival at the border. In fiscal year 2022, a record 149,000 UAC were apprehended by federal agents, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP) figures.
Underage migrants without an adult usually possess a ticket into the U.S. via the Mexican border and this disturbing case illustrates the profound consequences of such a reckless program. Over the summer a 20-year-old woman was raped and murdered by a member of the notoriously violent Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) street gang, according to a Baltimore news report. DNA evidence collected at the crime scene led police to a 17-year-old from El Salvador and detectives confirm the perpetrator is an illegal immigrant and a member of MS-13. This week the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), the Washington D.C. think tank devoted to the research of U.S. immigration policy, revealed that the illegal immigrant gangbanger was allowed into the country by the Biden administration as a UAC. He committed the heinous crime “only months after being released into the United States,” CIS confirms. The group is calling for an investigation into the government’s release of the dangerous individual.
The overwhelming majority of UAC are not really children but rather young adults in their teens and some have criminal histories. Government figures show that approximately 72% of UAC in custody are over 14 years of age and 66% are male. Nearly half (47%) of the underage migrants come from Guatemala, 32% from Honduras,13% from El Salvador and 8% from other countries. As of January 20, 2023, there are about 6,862 UAC in government care. The goal is to identify a sponsor in the U.S. and release the minor as soon as possible. The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), which operates under HHS, claims it vets sponsors thoroughly and conducts criminal checks before releasing UAC to their custody. It is unclear who the agency released this young gang member to or what the vetting process uncovered. What is certain is that the agency makes “all efforts” to release UAC “as quickly as possible.”
This is hardly the first time a UAC commits a violent crime after entering the U.S. through the Mexican border. A few years ago two UAC were charged with raping a 14-year-old girl in the bathroom of a Maryland public high school. The illegal immigrants were both charged with first-degree rape and two counts of first-degree sexual offense. Both were in the ninth grade like their victim. One came from El Salvador and the other from Guatemala. A year earlier two UAC, both 17, from Central America executed a Massachusetts man by shooting him in the head shortly after being welcomed into the U.S. by the Obama administration. Both had ties to MS-13, authorities disclosed at the time. The media described the violent gangbangers as “baby-faced boys.”
Shortly after the first batch of UAC arrived in mid-2014, Judicial Watch reported that many had ties to gang members in the U.S., specifically MS-13. Homeland Security sources directly involved with the UAC crisis told Judicial Watch that street gangs, including MS-13, went on a recruiting frenzy at U.S. shelters housing the illegal alien minors and they used Red Cross phones to communicate. The MS-13 is a feared street gang of mostly Central American illegal immigrants that has spread throughout the U.S. and is renowned for drug distribution, murder, rape, robbery, home invasions, kidnappings, vandalism, and other violent crimes. The Justice Department’s National Gang Intelligence Center (NGIC) says criminal street gangs like the MS-13 are responsible for the majority of violent crimes in the U.S. and are the primary distributors of most illicit drugs.