McALLEN, Texas — Prominent immigration activist and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, who has lived and worked in the United States illegally for years, was released by U.S. Border Patrol agents on Tuesday after they detained him at a South Texas airport.
Border Patrol spokesman Omar Zamora said Vargas was stopped going through security at McAllen/Miller International Airport, only a few miles from the Mexico border. A spokeswoman for Define American, Vargas' advocacy group, confirmed his release Tuesday afternoon.
It's common for the Border Patrol to release people on their own recognizances, with notices to appear in court later. With such notices, people can generally travel throughout the United States without being detained again.
Vargas had been visiting McAllen as part of a vigil to highlight the plight of unaccompanied immigrant children coming into the United States illegally who have overwhelmed Border Patrol sites.