The family of a woman whose son was seen in a viral video at the United States border is celebrating her freedom after she was released from kidnappers.
“My sister was set free,” Misael Obregon said in a YouTube video posted Wednesday after the release of his sister, Meylin. “Thank you, God. What a blessing.”
Video of her 10-year-old-son Wilton crying to agents at the U.S. border near Texas went viral and highlighted the growing immigration crisis facing the Biden administration.
Obregon’s family in Miami said the ordeal has been tough on all of them.
“My husband hasn’t been sleeping. He’s been very stressed that we couldn’t do anything about it because just imagine this isn’t easy,” Obregon's sister-in-law said to sister station Teleumdo 51. “She’s my sister in law, she’s family.”
She added Meylin and her son fled Nicaragua because they were in danger. Obregon said the family is now trying to get custody of Wilton and bring him to Miami while his biological father is also trying to get custody and keep him in his home country.
Immigration Attorney Eduardo Soto explained the process for releasing unaccompanied minors who have been detained in the United States.
"They are processed, they can be screened, tested, etc., and if a parent or in this case an uncle, provides information that he or she is ready, willing, and able to provide for them, they will release and they must release this child to the adult.
Soto added that if the boy’s biological father comes to the U.S. and establishes his parental rights, the boy will likely go to him.
"If the father comes here and establishes his rights, more than likely the child will be given to the father," Soto said.
Wilton remains in U.S. government custody until a decision is made.
A changing policy allowing unaccompanied minors to stay in the United States has led to an influx of undocumented immigrants at the border.
The U.S. government picked up nearly 19,000 children traveling alone across the Mexican border in March, authorities said last week, the largest monthly number ever recorded and a major test for Biden as he reverses many of his predecessor’s hardline immigration tactics.
EDITOR'S NOTE: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said the mother and son had been reunited.