A plane transporting more than a dozen migrants landed in Sacramento, Calif., on Monday, according to state officials, who say it appears the flight was organized by Florida.
Monday’s flight, which arrived in California’s capital city with 20 migrants from Texas, is the second instance of a private plane transporting migrants to the Golden State since Friday.
It appears that the same contractor with ties to Florida was used to operate both flights.
“Special agents from the California Department of Justice are on the ground and have made contact with these individuals,” a spokesperson for California Attorney General Rob Bonta said in a statement.
“The contractor operating the flight that arrived today appears to be the same contractor who transported the migrants last week. As was the case with the migrants who arrived on Friday, the migrants who arrived today carried documents indicating that their transportation to California involved the state of Florida.”
Friday’s flight involved 16 migrants originally hailing from Colombia and Venezuela, who were reportedly taken from Texas to New Mexico before being flown in a private chartered jet to California.
The group of asylum-seekers possessed documentation “purporting to be from the government of the State of Florida,” Bonta said in a press release on Saturday, adding that the state was “evaluating potential criminal or civil action against those who transported or arranged for the transport of these vulnerable immigrants.”
Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom said the migrants that arrived on Friday were “dumped on the doorstep of a local church without any advance warning.”
On Monday, Newsom derided Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis as a “small, pathetic man” over his alleged involvement in Friday’s flight.
”[DeSantis] you small, pathetic man. This isn’t Martha’s Vineyard. Kidnapping charges?” Newsom wrote in a tweet, linking to a California law that indicates a person from out of state who transports someone else to California “by force or fraud” could be guilty of kidnapping.
Last year, two planes transporting migrants from Texas arrived in Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., in an attempt by DeSantis to highlight the crisis on the southern border.
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