(dailynews.com) The day after reports of federal immigration sweeps echoed through Southern California communities, family members and advocates for those detained demanded transparency from immigration officials, citing a lack of information that led to fear and the splitting apart of families.
“We need to be together. We need to support each other, because in United States, we’re united,” said Marlene Mosqueda, as she pleaded Friday in front of a throng of media microphones in a news conference to hear what happened to her father Manuel Mosqueda, who she said was detained in the Immigration and Customs Enforcement sweeps.
ICE officials said Thursday there was nothing unusual about the sweeps – that the agency conducts “enforcement actions” every day around the country and in Southern California.
Reports of raids ranged from San Bernardino to Van Nuys and came as Southern California lawmakers and immigration advocates clash over President Donald Trump’s efforts to dismantle so-called sanctuary cities and to build a wall between the United States and Mexico – both efforts he says will bolster the nation’s security.
But on Friday, in the news conference downtown that included elected officials and immigration advocates, a theme emerged that the actions on Thursday were different.
Angelica Salas, executive director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, said that the Southern California sweeps were fast and atypical.
“Yesterday was not an ordinary day,” she said. “These were coordinated raids,” Salas said of what ultimately became deportations.
California state Sen. Kevin de Leon said there needs to be transparency from ICE as to why people were detained Thursday.
The news of deportations spread swiftly through Southern California, prompting a vigil that rapidly became a protest in downtown L.A., where a crowd of 100 people blocked road and freeway entrances, with chants of “Let them out!” directed toward the nearby Metropolitan Detention Center.