WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Lance Gooden (R-TX) reintroduced the "End Child Trafficking Now Act," this legislation will require DNA testing to verify the familial relationship between an alien who presents at the southern border with a minor.  

This legislation will cut down on the practice of “child recycling”, where the same child is used to gain entry and sent back across the border to be used repeatedly. Under the Trump administration, Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) implemented a pilot program and the results were astounding: nearly one in five claims of kinship were proven fraudulent.

"Every child deserves protection, particularly those most vulnerable," Rep. Gooden stated. "The exploitation of underage aliens by human traffickers is one of the most sickening results of the border crisis. This legislation will ensure that young children are no longer viewed as "skip the line" tickets by cartel members."

Under the proposed legislation, the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of Health and Human Services will administer a DNA test to verify the familial relationship between an adult alien and a minor. Should the DNA test fail to prove a familial relationship, the minor will be treated as an unaccompanied alien child, and the adult alien may be arrested if there is reason to believe they are involved in felony offenses, such as human trafficking or alien smuggling.

This bill also introduces a new felony offense titled "Recycling of Minors," which mandates a maximum 10-year penalty for any individuals who fabricate family ties or guardianship over a minor.
Congressman Gooden concluded, "With this bill, we send a clear message that we are committed to the safety and welfare of children, standing firm against any forms of exploitation."

Read the full text here.