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Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) officers from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) look on after executing search warrants and making some arrests at an agricultural processing facility in Canton, Mississippi, U.S. in this August 7, 2019 handout photo. Photo by Immigration and Customs Enforcement/Handout via REUTERS

Border official: Timing of immigration raids ‘unfortunate’

WASHINGTON — Trump administration officials are defending last week’s mass immigration raids in Mississippi, including emotional footage of a girl pleading with authorities to let her father go.

Acting Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Mark Morgan acknowledged that video of the 11-year-old sobbing was “emotional” but says the girl was quickly reunited with her mother.

He said Sunday on CNN: “I understand that the girl is upset. And I get that. But her father committed a crime.”

Acting U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan testifies before a House Appropriations Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on "FY2020 Budget Hearing - Department of Homeland Security." on Capitol Hill in Washington, on April 30, 2019. Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Reuters

Acting U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan testifies before a House Appropriations Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on “FY2020 Budget Hearing – Department of Homeland Security.” on Capitol Hill in Washington, on April 30, 2019. Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Reuters

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan acknowledged the timing of the raids was “unfortunate,” coming hours before President Donald Trump visited El Paso, Texas, where a man who told authorities he was targeting Mexicans killed 22 people on Aug. 3. But McAleenan tells NBC the operation had been planned for more than a year.

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