Refugees in the US have had their “welcome mats” removed from the US border to protect them from the risk of arrest.
A group of asylum seekers in Texas said they had been stopped by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the border in October and asked to leave their cars, walk on the pavement, or lie down.
One of them, Michael Kwan, said: “They asked me to sit on the ground and I was like, ‘What is this?'”
Immigration lawyer Robert Fortunato said the officers did not explain why the group needed to be “watched” or how they would be safe.
The group of refugees, including several children, said they were detained at a checkpoint in Texas after crossing the border illegally.
A video posted on social media showed one of the officers walking to a car with a group of about 15 people, who were then asked to put their hands behind their backs.
The men said they would then be searched by Border Patrol agents.
They were later allowed to leave the car without being arrested.
“They just walked up and asked me if I needed help and I said, ‘Yes’,” Mr Kwan told the Associated Press news agency.
“I told them it was just a little bit of trouble.
It was just about 15 minutes.”
He said he had been in the United States for eight years.
The US Border Patrol declined to comment on the case, saying it had no comment to make on individual cases.
The Texas state attorney general’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The incident comes amid growing criticism of the American border police, with several federal agencies including the Justice Department, the FBI and Homeland Security launching investigations into the agency’s performance.