Watch: Woman Dragged Away by Immigration Agents in Front of Her Crying Children in California

A Facebook video of a woman being arrested by immigration officers in front of her wailing children went viral on Thursday.

According to Facebook user Judith Castro, who posted two videos showing the arrest on the social media website, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers detained Perla Morales-Luna in National City, California, Thursday afternoon as she walked with her three daughters to pay her rent.

One of the videos CBP agents stopped the family on the sidewalk and forcibly dragged Morales-Luna into a patrol vehicle.

Local news reports confirmed Morales-Luna's identity and the place of the arrest. Federal authorities said Morales-Luna had been targeted for allegedly being a part of a transnational drug-smuggling operation. Border Patrol spokesman Theron Francisco said she was being held on suspicion of being in the country illegally, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The videos showed three CPB agents dragging Morales-Luna into a squad vehicle amid cries from her daughters to "let her go." By press time, the videos had more than 8.5 million views.

Castro, one of Morales-Luna's daughter's teachers, later said she thought it was important to share the video, though even she couldn't sit through it.

"Honestly I couldn't watch the whole thing," Castro told NBC 7 in San Diego. "Just seeing a mom being approached by agents who are dressed in civilian clothing, with no badges to be seen, and just literally dragging the mom away into the border patrol truck."

Immigration authorities have come under fire in recent weeks over what advocates described as an uptick in arrests of noncriminal heads of families.

Most recently, the case of a Congolese mother seeking asylum separated at the border from her 7-year-old daughter as they tried to enter the country without proper authorization sparked outrage among immigration and civil rights advocates. On Tuesday, Immigration and Customs Enforcement released the mother from a detention center in San Diego. Her daughter, who was transported to a detention center in Chicago, has yet to be released.