Woman Sues Federal Government for $5 Million for Deporting Daughter to Mexico When Father Arrested

A woman whose American-born daughter was deported to Mexico with the father is suing the federal government for $5 million.

Texas native Monica Castro accuses the U.S. Border Patrol of refusing to release her daughter to her when the girl's father was arrested in December 2003.

Despite proving the child was born in the U.S., Castro says officials took the girl from Lubbock to the Texas-Mexico border.

Castro did not find and regain custody of her daughter until three years later.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Corpus Christi is handling the case. They declined to comment. In court documents, the federal government contends the Border Patrol was acting within its discretion to allow a father to take his daughter to Mexico. The government also says it has sovereign immunity from Castro's suit.

A federal court in Corpus Christi dismissed Castro's case last year. Attorneys from Texas RioGrande Legal Aid are appealing the dismissal to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.