FACT CHECK: Were Over 60 Children Found In Shipping Containers In A Delaware Port?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A viral Facebook post shared more than 6,700 times claims over 60 children were recently found in shipping containers at a Delaware port.

Verdict: False

There is no evidence to substantiate the claim. A spokesperson for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection called it a “false rumor.”

Fact Check:

Social media is replete with unfounded rumors about sex trafficking, many stemming from the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory that posits President Donald Trump is fighting an underground cabal of Satanic pedophiles and cannibals. In recent days, a viral post claiming dozens of children were found inside shipping containers in Delaware has circulated online.

“Entire port in Delaware on lockdown?” reads the post. “60 plus kids found in shipping containers…” (RELATED: Was A Central Park Tent Hospital Housing Thousands Of Abused Children Rescued From Underground Captivity?)

There is, however, no evidence over 60 children were recently found in shipping containers at a Delaware port. The Daily Caller News Foundation didn’t find any credible news reporting about such a discovery, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the agency responsible for screening cargo that enters the U.S. at seaports, hasn’t announced anything to that effect in a press release.

“Customs and Border Protection thoroughly investigated and found zero evidence to substantiate this false rumor of a human smuggling event through the Port of Wilmington, Del.,” Stephen Sapp, a spokesman for Customs and Border Protection, said in an email to the DCNF.

Wilmington, the busiest port in Delaware, handles over 6 million tons of cargo annually, according to the Diamond State Port Corporation, a corporate entity of the state of Delaware. The state has other ports, but Sapp confirmed that no such discovery was made at those either.

“CBP officers and Border Patrol agents along the Southwest border often intercept human trafficking attempts, but I haven’t heard of any that involved 62 girls or kids,” Sapp added. “If that happened, CBP would have announced that interception and it would have been international news.”

It’s unclear where the rumor originated, but it may be linked to the QAnon conspiracy theory. Several accounts on Facebook and Twitter that posted the erroneous information appear to have previously shared content associated with the theory.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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