January 17, 2019
A reported leader of the most recent migrant caravan to leave Honduras for the United States was arrested in San Pedro Sula for an alleged rape.
According to Columbia’s El Heraldo, via Google translation:
The suspect was identified as Juan Carlos Molina, who was supposedly one of the organizers of the exodus that left Monday from San Pedro Sula to the United States.
National Police told the news site Molina was under surveillance and arrested at a checkpoint for a pending 2015 arrest warrant for rape, based on a complaint from a protected witness.
The news site published images of hundreds of Hondurans – mostly men and young boys, but also mothers and small children – marching out of the city as they headed north through Guatemala on Monday.
Deputy Foreign Minister Nelly Jerez told El Heraldo 60 minors were detained at the border Monday when they attempted to cross into Guatemala, including 10 who were not accompanied by their parents.
The Foreign Ministry estimates that about 13,000 Hondurans made it to Mexico in two previous caravans in recent months, with more than half – 7,270 returning home after they were blocked from asylum at the U.S. border. At least 11 people died in the caravans, while thousands of others remain in shelters in Mexico.
Honduras’ National Institute of Migration warned the most recent wave of departing migrants that while adults can travel freely through Guatemala, they’re required to obtain a visa to enter Mexico. Citizens under the age of 21, meanwhile, must acquire a current passport from the INM with exit authorization that’s signed by both parents and authenticated by a notary before leaving Honduras.
Many people, some minors by themselves and others smuggling children that aren’t their own, simply cross the borders illegally without the required documents.
INM data shows a total 329 minors were detained at the Guatemala border during the previous caravan for not having the right documents, while 3,207 were returned home because they did not support the trip, according to the news site.
El Heraldo reported last week that the recent migrant caravans have also led to record arrests in Mexico.
“It is very likely that the Mexican government has closed with a record number of undocumented Honduran captures in 2018, in the absence of December figures from the Ministry of the Interior,” according to the site, translated by Google. “Between January and November of last year, 57,193 arrests were reported. This figure is much higher than what happened in 2017, when only 31,349 undocumented catches were registered. Most of the cases that make up this number are people traveling to the U.S.”
The site reports that in October alone, as the previous caravans moved north and U.S. voters prepared for the midterm election, Mexico arrested 9,740 illegal immigrants from Honduras.
“In the last five years, there have not been as many arrests reported in a single month as in October 2018,” according to El Heraldo.
This article was posted: Thursday, January 17, 2019 at 6:44 am