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DNA tests, criminal charges complicate effort to reunite illegal immigrant families

The federal government has caught at least five adults whose claims to be parents of illegal immigrant children were disproven with DNA tests. Eight more had serious criminal records, including murder and kidnapping charges, that made them unfit to take back their own children, the government said Tuesday.

Those were among the tougher cases the government has had to sort through as it rushed to make a judge’s deadline for reuniting the youngest of the children separated in the aftermath of President Trump’s zero-tolerance border policy.

Federal officials signaled Tuesday that they were scrapping the policy for dozens of families, preparing to release them rather than detain them, as the president had promised.

 Yet even with that retreat, the government was still struggling to meet the deadline imposed by Judge Dana Sabraw.

Just 38 of the original 102 separated children under age 5 were guaranteed to be reunited by Tuesday, officials said. Another 16 were on the bubble for reunification, the government said, saying it depended on whether they were able to finish out a series of checks to make sure the children weren’t heading to unsafe conditions.

Judge Sabraw told them to speed it up, saying they could cut corners on their usual process in order to get the kids back with people who claimed to be their parents. Read more

Read also: Trump tests the turning radius on the ship of state

DNA tests, criminal charges complicate effort to reunite illegal immigrant families

The federal government has caught at least five adults whose claims to be parents of illegal immigrant children were disproven with DNA tests. Eight more had serious criminal records, including murder and kidnapping charges, that made them unfit to take back their own children, the government said Tuesday.