Texas AG Brings Down Hammer On Migrant Scheme

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on February 20 filed a countersuit against an El Paso-based Catholic NGO, accusing the group of human smuggling and harboring illegal aliens, ABC News reported.

Officials from Paxton’s office visited Annunciation House in El Paso on February 7 to demand all documentation, including the identities of the illegal aliens the group had helped.

An attorney for the NGO filed a lawsuit the following day requesting an injunction to prevent Annunciation House from complying with the Attorney General’s request.

In response, Paxton’s office filed a counterclaim asking the court to dismiss Annunciation House’s request for an injunction. The claim also seeks to have Annunciation House’s registration revoked for violating the law and preventing the Attorney General’s office from inspecting its documents.

In his counterclaim, Paxton accused the NGO of engaging in human smuggling, operating as a stash house, harboring illegals, and facilitating illegal entry across the border.

In a February 20 statement announcing the lawsuit, Paxton accused Annunciation House of contributing to the worsening illegal immigration crisis in the state. He also blasted the Biden administration for creating an environment in which NGOs like Annunciation House are given taxpayer money to facilitate “astonishing horrors” while the administration “perpetuates the lawlessness destroying this country.”

In a statement responding to Paxton’s counterclaim, Annunciation House claimed that Paxton’s true goal was not to review the group’s records but to shut it down. It alleged that Paxton was claiming that it was a crime “for a Catholic organization to provide shelter to refugees.”

The group described Paxton’s effort to revoke its registration as “illegal,” “immoral,” and “anti-faith.”

In a press conference on February 23, Annunciation House’s lawyer Jerry Wesevich said he had asked the Attorney General’s Office to give the group 30 days to turn over the documents requested. He said the officials would only give the group 24 hours, forcing him to sue for the injunction.