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“The network has grown exponentially! We think we could probably generate another 50 within 48 hours.”

Migrants who have been flown to Martha’s Vineyard are taken on a bus to the ferry to the mainland. Matt Cosby/The New York Times

In September, about 50 migrants were flown from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard, shocking the small island community, the migrants themselves and leaders across the country. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who took credit for the operation, and a close group of officials and executives were not surprised. Their plan worked.

Now text messages obtained by Boston Globe detailing how the flights came together and the mindset of the planners when organizing operations. Messagesobtained on the basis of an application for a public register by Globeshow how scatterbrained the planners were when they performed their political feat.

Perla Huerta, a former U.S. Army counterintelligence specialist that the migrants were talking about recruited for their trip, she expressed her delight to DeSantis Public Safety Chief Larry Keefe on September 14, the day the migrants landed in Massachusetts.

“Winning arms to you!!!! Thank you for this opportunity and support,” Huerta wrote to Keefe.

He replied, “Thank you for everything, Perla!!! Let’s keep going!!!”

Keefe and Huerta had exchanged many messages in the previous weeks Globe reported. Keefe shared articles on illegal immigration with Huerta, including El Paso Times article about Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s program to transport migrants by bus to destinations such as New York and Washington

“I’m sure it won’t be long before other places jump on board,” Huerta reportedly replied.

Huerta also asked Keefe for advice on where to find the migrants Globe. She sent him screenshots of Google searches that included questions like “What states do immigrants go to?” or “Which US state has the fewest immigrants?”

Huerta briefed Keefe on the various places she looked for migrants in San Antonio, including churches, the transportation office, and the Stripes store parking lot.

In August, Keefe and Huerta talked about relaxing and celebrating with wine after a “productive” week.

“If you need wine to unwind or anything from the store because you seem to be putting out fires, let me know and I’ll pick it up,” Huerta wrote to Keefe.

“Thank you, but I’m ready. Perhaps tomorrow night we can celebrate a productive week with a glass of wine with dinner,” Keefe replied.

Businessman James Montgomerie also kept Keefe informed. Montgomerie owns Vertol Systems Inc., a transportation company used by Florida officials to ferry migrants to Martha’s Vineyard. Globe.

“Tonight we are 34, as confirmed in the manifesto, we will be 50 on Tuesday, no problem,” Montgomerie wrote to Keefe on September 10.

The next day, Montgomerie sent a message to Keefe confirming that they had reached 50 migrants, complete with a thumbs up emoji.

“Congratulations. Great job,” Keefe replied.

“The network has grown exponentially! We think we could probably generate another 50 within 48 hours,” Montgomerie wrote.

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In the weeks since Huerta, Montgomerie, Keefe and DeSantis went ahead with their plan, law enforcement officials said the migrants had been lured to Massachusetts under false pretenses. A Texas sheriff investigating the incident confirmed last month that the migrants were victims of crime.

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