Despite President Donald Trump's reassurances in December and January that he would "work something out" with undocumented immigrants who came to America as children and that he has a "big heart", there is now the first proven case of an undocumented immigrant being deported.
A Southern California community college student who lived in the US under a deferred action program sued the federal government Tuesday after he was sent back to Mexico in February. A statement from U.S. Customs and Border Protection says that Montes was arrested for "illegally entering the U.S.by climbing over the fence in downtown Calexico".
The problem, though, is on the part of the story both sides agree on: Montes tried to sneak back into the U.S. on February 19 and was caught by Border Patrol. "To this date, Mr. Montes, who suffers from a cognitive disability and is living in limbo in Mexico, does not know the legal basis for his removal", the complaint states.
The Department of Homeland Security refuted on Tuesday a USA TODAY report that an illegal immigrant was deported to Mexico despite his temporary legal status under an Obama administration program. But it said Montes acknowledged under oath that he entered the country illegally on February 19, forcing him to lose status because it was an admission that he left without required permission.More news: Tens of Thousands March on Tax Day
Curiel's involvement is sure to increase the publicity surrounding the case, which is already shaping up to be one of the more high-profile challenges to execution of Trump's immigration agenda. The post read: "First non-valedictorian DREAMer deported". DACA status is renewable every two years.
The Homeland Security spokeswoman also claimed that Montes's protection under DACA had expired in 2015 and had not been renewed.
After searching him and confiscating his phone and his wallet, the Border Patrol officers had him sign papers in English "without explaining the documents' contents and without providing him the opportunity to review the documents" and without giving him a copy of them. But the lawsuit alleges that the incident described by Border Patrol happened days after his initial deportation.
The National Immigration Law Center, which represents Montes, stood by its account.More news: Congresswoman Maxine Waters: 'Bill O'Reilly Needs to Go to Jail'
"Juan Manuel has been unequivocal in his assertion that he never voluntarily left the country while he had DACA", said attorney Nora Preciado. 'We believe him. Rather than continue to provide half-truths and varying assertions, DHS should respond to our request for documentation.
Juan Manuel Montes Bojorquez, 23, arrived in the United States when he was 9. The program offers renewable two-year periods of protection, as well as eligibility for a work permit, for undocumented immigrants who entered the United States as minors.
The government has issued almost 800,000 DACA permits since President Barack Obama introduced the program in 2012 and almost 700,000 renewals.More news: Cannabis Act: Canada set to legalise marijuana to keep children 'safe'
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