Latino civil rights group offers $5K reward to find woman who 'baited' migrants to Vineyard

Heather McCarron
Cape Cod Times

Before boarding chartered planes that brought them to Martha's Vineyard on Wednesday, migrants from South America — mostly from Venezuela — said they were approached in San Antonio, Texas, by a woman named "Perla," who said they'd be given jobs and housing when they arrived.

Now, the League of United Latin American Citizens, the country's oldest and largest Latino civil rights organization, is looking for her, and any others who are working with her.

A migrant family makes their way to a bus on Friday that would transport them from St. Andrew's church in Edgartown, Massachusetts, to a ferry that would bring them to a military base on nearby Cape Cod.

The organization on Saturday afternoon issued a nationwide plea, and a $5,000 reward, for information leading to the identification and arrest of the woman.

 "LULAC is taking this action of offering a $5,000 reward to help stop the deliberate and possible illegal actions of deceiving people by enticement," LULAC National President Domingo Garcia said in a statement.

Perla in Texas offering free housing and work, migrants said

According to Garcia, many of the migrants who found themselves on Martha's Vineyard on Sept. 15 told him and other LULAC representatives who traveled to the island on Friday that the woman had enticed them with promises of free housing and three months of work if they took the flight. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has taken credit for the transfer.

Garcia said Perla — described as being "light-complected" with blonde hair, and accompanied by a man in a white truck — approached the migrants in San Antonio, Texas, near the Migrant Resource Center.

The League of United Latin American Citizens has issued a wanted poster and a reward for information leading to the identification and arrest of a woman who migrants said lured them to Martha's Vineyard with false promises.

"Clearly, her actions were to use lies to lure men and women into being used as political piñatas without their knowledge," Garcia said.

He said it is illegal "to recruit immigrants for employment when they do not have work permits."

"The entire country is witnessing the shameful toll these lies have taken on people in despair, the least among us," Garcia said.

The civil rights group is canvassing San Antonio in search of the 'Perla'

LULAC representatives are at work this weekend canvassing San Antonio in search of the woman, and putting up "wanted" posters in areas where she has been reported working.

"LULAC is warning the migrants and residents to be on the lookout for this individual," said Garcia, who claims the woman is "acting as a recruiter for undocumented aliens for Gov. DeSantis, not there to provide real assistance to people who need it."

The organization is exploring legal action against Perla and anyone else involved "for inducing people to violate their parole conditions while awaiting their immigration court date."

"LULAC will not allow Perla or anyone else to exploit innocent Latinos, and we will push for the prosecution to the fullest extent of the law," Garcia said.

LULAC is instructing anyone with information to call 214-941-8300 or to email

Contact Heather McCarron at 

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