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Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal

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  1. Immigrants Worry They'll Face Deportation After Deferred Action Delay

    by , 03-04-2015 at 10:10 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    From NPR:

    "Ayala's lawyer, Bryan Johnson, argued that his client was eligible for Obama's deferred action program for parents, which temporarily protected Ayala from deportation until the Texas court ruling put the program on hold. Now, Johnson says he's not sure what will happen during their next appointment with immigration officials.

    "I'm going to tell ICE that we're waiting for deferred action, and then from there, we'll see what happens," says Johnson, a partner at the immigration law firm Amoachi & Johnson. "But I mean he's not safe because there is no deferred action to apply for."

  2. Immigrant Communities are Facing Deportation as Immigration Remains in Legal Limbo

    by , 03-03-2015 at 10:47 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    From my appearance on MSNBC's The Rundown with José Díaz-Balart:

    "José Díaz-Balart talks with immigration attorney Matthew Kolken about the fallout from the continuing legal limbo surrounding the president’s immigration actions."

  3. Complaint: Obama Admin Unlawfully Coerced Mexican Nationals into Self-Deportation

    by , 03-02-2015 at 08:38 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The Obama administration allegedly engaged in "abusive and illegal practices" that coerce citizens of Mexico into abandoning defenses that could prevent their deportation.

    The complaint speaks for itself:

    The immigration enforcement agencies operating in Southern California regularly pressure, deceive, and threaten Mexican nationals who are eligible to reside in the United States lawfully—and have built lives in the United States over decades—into signing their own expulsion orders through misuse of a process known as “voluntary departure.” These abusive and illegal practices rob victims of their right to seek relief from removal. As administered and practiced in Southern California, the “voluntary departure” program has become a regime of unlawful coerced expulsion—one which tears numerous families apart every year.

    Immigration officers’ misstatements and omissions are exacerbated by the fact that they regularly pressure individuals to agree to voluntary departure before they have had any opportunity to speak to an attorney. Immigration enforcement agencies in Southern California expel individuals who have taken voluntary departure as rapidly as logistically possible in many instances, on the same day. This practice violates the agencies’ governing regulations, which require that immigration officers exercise discretion to determine whether to allow an individual who has taken voluntary departure a period of up to 120 days to leave the United States. Thus, individuals who have been in the United States for decades are unlawfully ripped from their families and established lives for up to ten years without having time to consider their other legal options, put their affairs in order, or even say goodbye to family members.

    Click here to read the settlement.

    Updated 03-03-2015 at 02:27 PM by MKolken

  4. DAPA Eligible Father of Four Citizen Children Deported

    by , 02-28-2015 at 04:26 PM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Courtesy of Houston immigration lawyer Amy Maldonado:

    Texas immigration attorney Norma Sepulveda’s DAPA-eligible client Mr. Henry Alvarado is married to a lawful permanent resident of the United States, and has four U.S. citizen children. Mr. Alvarado had been living in Houston Texas continuously since 2005. Importantly, Mr. Alvarado does not fall under any of the enforcement priorities established in the November 20, 2014 memo. After being pulled over by the police department on his way to Corpus Christi for work (his wife who had lawful status and a driver’s license was driving), U.S. Border Patrol was called and Mr. Alvarado was taken into custody.


    Mr. Alvarado’s attorney requested his release on February 20, 2015, and received a response on February 26, 2015 from the ICE San Antonio Field Office, Enforcement and Removal Operations that her client was removed to Honduras the day prior.

    Mr. Alvarado was deported on February 25, 2015; ironically, the very same day that President Obama gave assurances at the MSNBC town hall on immigration that persons in Mr. Alvarado’s situation are not at risk, and that ICE employees ignoring directives on enforcement priorities would suffer consequences.

    Updated 02-28-2015 at 04:49 PM by MKolken

  5. DAPA Eligible Father of Four Scheduled For Deportation TODAY

    by , 02-27-2015 at 09:32 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The following is courtesy of Houston immigration lawyer Amy Maldanado:

    Just this morning, I received an e-mail from an Attorney with a DAPA eligible, non-enforcement priority client scheduled to be deported today by St Louis ERO because he has an outstanding voluntary departure order from June of 2012. He has four USC kids under the age of five, including seven-month old twins. The attorney filed a stay of removal yesterday and got the NILC involved in helping her contact DHS Headquarters about this.

    When the attorney asked the client's ICE officer whether he knew my client was DAPA eligible and not an enforcement priority, he told her they're not following that right now. When she saw him in person as she filed the stay, she asked him if he heard about the President's town hall speech on Wed night, about how this scenario isn't & shouldn't be happening. The ICE officer told her again that they aren't following that right now. She asked why they're not following it or who they are following, and he said "the federal judge." She said that even if DAPA is halted, the enforcement priorities memo is still in place, and her client is not an enforcement priority. He said they're following some other guidelines. When she pressed him on why he's not following the guidelines set out by his Department's secretary, he told her that he's not the one who will decide my stay & they will get back to her.

    Decision and/or imminent removal pending.

    UPDATE: The immigration lawyer handling the case in St. Louis is Meggie Biesenthal. She has given permission to publish the original email sent to Amy Maldanado:
    Hi, Amy.

    I hope you are well! Nicole Cortes of St Louis' nonprofit MICA project gave me your information because I have a case where my DAPA eligible, non-enforcement priority client is scheduled to be deported today by St Louis ERO because he has an outstanding voluntary departure order from June of 2012. He has four USC kids under the age of five, including seven-month old twins. I filed a stay of removal yesterday and got the NILC involved in helping me contact DHS Headquarters about this.

    When I asked my client's ICE officer whether he knew my client was DAPA eligible and not an enforcement priority, he told me they're not following that right now. When I saw him in person as I filed the stay, I asked him if he heard about the President's town hall speech on Wed night, about how this scenario isn't & shouldn't be happening. The ICE officer told me again that they aren't following that right now. I asked why they're not following it or who they are following, and he said "the federal judge." I said that even if DAPA is halted, the enforcement priorities memo is still in place, and my client is not an enforcement priority. He said they're following some other guidelines. When I pressed him on why he's not following the guidelines set out by his Department's secretary, he told me he's not the one who will decide my stay & they will get back to me.

    I'm still waiting on a stay decision (last time a denial came at 7am and they put my client on a plane that day). If we get a denial, the NILC has suggested we start getting media involved to call & let the local ICE office know that they're watching.

    Thank you so much for your time and this connection!

    Meggie

    Updated 02-27-2015 at 12:15 PM by MKolken

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