Migrants flown, bused to Martha's Vineyard at risk of deportation if they don't check in with ICE in WA

The controversy of Republican governors bussing illegal immigrants to Democrat-run northern locations continues to grow.

Earlier this week, migrants were dropped off outside the Vice President's home at the Naval Observatory and on Martha's Vineyard.

Democrats call the moves cruel and inhumane political stunts, and the administration is said to be exploring legal options.

FOX 13 News has learned some of those families are expected to check in with immigration offices in Western Washington by Monday, a trip of more than 3,000 miles, or risk deportation.

Boston Immigration Attorney, Rachel Self, told FOX 13 via a statement: "Before they boarded the planes, the migrants were processed by agents of the Department of Homeland Security, who listed falsified addresses on the migrants' paperwork. Agents apparently chose random homeless shelters all across the country, from Washington state to Florida."

Self says this is especially troubling because from her legal perspective, this is a clear and intentional attempt to make sure migrants were removed.  

Legally, migrants are required to check in with the ICE office nearest to them or be permanently removed from the U.S.

Self’s statement continues reading in part, "There is no other reason to list as someone's mailing address a homeless shelter in Tacoma, WA and then ship him to Massachusetts. It is sickeningly cruel."

Seattle Immigration Attorney, Tahmina Watson, says lawyers across the country are signing up to help families traveling across several countries for weeks and months to get to the U.S. seeking asylum, but she says this is just a stunt on behalf of governors.

"It is not illegal to come to the United States and ask for asylum," Watson said. "It's a political maneuver. It's an election maneuver likely and people's lives should not be used this way. The legality of what the government has done has to be looked at."

While Watson cannot confirm how many families are scheduled to appear in court in Western Washington or if documents were in fact sent to shelters in Tacoma, she says migrants' cases will be more challenging. 

"It's definitely not the responsibility of the shelter and the shelter isn't the one that's hearing the cases it’s the court," Watson said. "So while the court's being notified, the confusion is on many levels, and that needs to be cleared."

State Representative Dylan Fernandes says several officials, including Senator Markey, Elizabeth Warren and Bill Keating, are in direct contact with DHS.

"I know they're working with them and with immigration attorneys to make sure that anyone that has an upcoming appointment, whether they're false or not, I can't comment on that but if they have a real appointment that those appointments are getting postponed and there's a there's a stay in those cases," Fernandes said.

For now, the migrants' long journey continues.

President Joe  Biden's Justice Department is now weighing legal options to stop the governors from moving migrants to sanctuary cities and states.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis says sending the migrants sends a message to far-off Democratic lawmakers who never have to share the logistical burden of caring for them.

In the meantime, the group of arrivals has been moved to military housing on Cape Cod