President Trump on Friday referred to the Flores Settlement as being decided on by “Judge Flores,” but the settlement was named after the plaintiff in the case, Jenny Lisette Flores, who fled El Salvador as a teenager.
“We’ve had some very bad court decisions. The Flores decision is a disaster, I have to tell you. Judge Flores, whoever you may be, that decision is a disaster for our country. A disaster. And we’re working on that,” Trump said during a roundtable near the southern border with border officials.
About the Flores Settlement: As CNN has previously reported, the settlement was named after the 15-year-old girl from El Salvador. She fled her country in 1985 and tried to enter the United States to be with her aunt. The former government agency Immigration and Naturalization Service arrested her at the border, and she was placed in a juvenile detention center, where she was handcuffed and strip-searched, according to the Marquette Law Review. The INS refused to grant her aunt custody of Jenny because it wouldn't release minors to "third-party adults," the law review article said. The American Civil Liberties Union filed a class-action suit on behalf of the girl and other minors, eventually leading to the Flores settlement during the Clinton administration.
The Trump Justice Department has attempted to modify the 1997 agreement by asking for more time to detain children than the agreement allows and detain children with their parents in Immigration and Customs Enforcement residential facilities.
Arizona Republic reporter Richard Ruelas first noticed Trump’s misstatement on Friday.