U.S. Customs and Border Protection broke the law by misusing money meant for medical care and food for those in immigration detention, a government watchdog says. Instead, the agency spent the funds on dirt bikes, dog food and leashes, boats and other unrelated items, according to a Government Accountability Office report released Thursday.
The discovery was made during an audit of Customs and Border Protection treatment of adults and children in immigration custody last year during a significant increase in the number of migrant families and children crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.
Many were detained in crowded Customs and Border Protection facilities, resulting in a humanitarian crisis. Several children died in federal custody, most falling ill in the temporary holding areas.
In response, Congress advanced the agency $4.6 billion, a large proportion of it intended for the care of children and families on the southern border.
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