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PayPal, GoFundMe cut off militia that detained migrants
PayPal and GoFundMe announced Friday that they will no longer allow an armed militia group that was seen on social media video confronting migrants at the border to raise funds on their platforms.
A PayPal spokesperson told BuzzFeed News in a statement that the United Constitutional Patriots had been banned from their platform following viral video of the group rounding up nearly 200 migrants who had recently crossed the border near Sunland Park, N.M., and were attempting to seek asylum.
"The account associated with United Constitutional Patriots has been closed due to a violation of our Acceptable Use Policy," the spokesperson told BuzzFeed News. "We do not allow PayPal services to be used to promote hate, violence, or other forms of intolerance that is discriminatory."
The leader of the militia, Mark Cheney, separately confirmed to BuzzFeed that GoFundMe had also frozen the group's accounts.
"They killed us," Cheney told the outlet. "I have to find some other way for people to donate."
"This campaign was removed from the platform because it was found to be in violation of GoFundMe terms and conditions," a GoFundMe spokesperson said when asked for comment.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has written to leaders in New Mexico calling on them to take action to prevent the militia from threatening migrant families.
"We cannot allow racist and armed vigilantes to kidnap and detain people seeking asylum," ACLU attorneys wrote to New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D).
Lujan Grisham responded Friday, saying that it was "completely unacceptable that migrant families "might be menaced or threatened in any way, shape or form when they arrive at our border."
"It should go without saying that regular citizens have no authority to arrest or detain anyone," she added in a statement.