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Lawyers say they can't find parents of 545 migrant children: report

Lawyers say they can't find parents of 545 migrant children: report
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Lawyers appointed to represent hundreds of children who were separated from their parents as a result of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump alludes to possible 2024 run in White House remarks Trump threatens to veto defense bill over tech liability shield Tiger King's attorney believes they're close to getting pardon from Trump MORE's 2018 policy say they are having a difficult time locating the adults, fearing many of them were deported while their children stayed in the country. 

The lawyers said the parents of 545 children have still yet to be located and they believe about two-thirds of those individuals were deported to Central America, according to court filing by the American Civil Liberties Union, NBC News reported on Tuesday. 

The ACLU and other law firms were appointed to represent the children, many of whom were kept in detention facilities away from their parents as part of the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy, which sparked backlash in 2018 and was eventually scrapped. 

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NBC News, which has done extensive reporting on the crisis at the Southwest border, estimated some 2,800 families were separated by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol as a means to deter further illegal immigration.   

“It is critical to find out as much as possible about who was responsible for this horrific practice while not losing sight of the fact that hundreds of families have still not been found and remain separated," Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project, told the outlet. "There is so much more work to be done to find these families."

Gelernt continued: "People ask when we will find all of these families and, sadly, I can’t give an answer. I just don’t know. But we will not stop looking until we have found every one of the families, no matter how long it takes. The tragic reality is that hundreds of parents were deported to Central America without their children, who remain here with foster families or distant relatives.”

Trump ran on a hardline immigration policy in 2016, promising to "build a wall" along the southwest border with Mexico and make the country pay for it.