tags: , , AVEF, Press Releases

Our Own Government is Targeting High School Soccer Stars For Deportation

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In our name and with our tax dollars

This week brings more troubling examples of long-settled immigrants the Trump Administration is targeting and deporting in our name. While they talk about MS-13, the DHS is mostly going after people with deep ties and no criminal records.

Below, we highlight just a few of many heartbreaking cases:

DC-Area Soccer Star Set for Deportation Instead of College Scholarship: 19-year-old Lizandro Claros Saravia graduated from Quince Orchard High School in Gaithersburg this year and was planning to attend Louisburg College in North Carolina on a soccer scholarship this fall. Claros Saravia and his brother, Diego, were detained last Friday in Baltimore when they went to their ICE check-in. The brothers entered the United States in 2009, fleeing violence in El Salvador, and for the were deemed low-priority by DHS. Claros Saravia’s teammates protested his detention and pending deportation last night outside Department of Homeland Security (DHS) headquarters.

The deportation of Michigan mother of three, Lourdes Salazar BautistaThis morning, Lourdes Salazar Bautista, a Mexican immigrant mom with three U.S. citizen children was deported. Salazar Bautista has gone to her local ICE office for the past seven years to receive a stay of removal as part of her check-in process to temporarily defer her deportation. At a check-in this March, she was told to prepare for removal come August. Despite the efforts of advocates and community members, Salazar Bautista was deported this morning.

Ohio mother of four facing deportation after 17 years in the United States: Nine days ago, Beatriz Morelos Casillas was pulled over while driving without a license. Today, she is set to be deported to the Texas border state of Tamaulipas – one of the most dangerous places in Mexico. According to USA Today: “The kids, ages 4 to 12, are U.S. citizens and never have been out of the United States, her husband Jose DeJesus said. ‘She doesn’t have anybody in Mexico,’ DeJesus said. ‘Everything she owns, everything she has is right here. … She is here to live the American dream.’”

Injured Ohio man deported to Mexico, kidnapped by Mexican crime cartel: Francisco Narcisco, while recovering from head injuries suffered in a car accident, was deported to a Mexican border town where he was kidnapped by a Mexican crime cartel and is being held for ransom, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The piece states: “Attorney Elizabeth Ford, an immigration attorney from Chardon, said Narciso’s treatment by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement was unacceptable, even though he had been deported several years ago and returned. ‘They basically dumped him out at the border in the middle of the night in a dangerous Mexican community with no regard for his safety,’ she said. ‘He was kidnapped by a criminal cartel and is now being held for ransom. Why would our immigration officials treat a man this way?’

Los Angeles Dad detained after dropping off daughter at school, set to be deported as early as next week: Romulo Avelica-Gonzalez was arrested minutes after dropping his 12-year-old daughter off at school. Avelica-Gonzalez has lived in the United States for 25 years and could be deported as early as August 7th. According to the LA Times, “ICE agents pulled him over and detained him six blocks from the school where he had dropped off his daughter. Another daughter in the car with him, now 14, sobbed as she recorded cellphone video of the encounter.” The video has since gone viral.

According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice Education Fund:

It’s time to see through the smokescreen. Our government is going after moms and dads, soccer players and carpool drivers. They talk loudly about how DHS is targeting criminals while quietly targeting the easiest people to find and deport. Mostly, ICE is arresting and deporting ‘low priority’ immigrants who show up for regularly-scheduled ICE check-ins. These are people who have strong equities and who have complying with all requirements. They aren’t public safety threats, but rather immigrants who the same DHS determined, under previous Administrations, should not be deported. Now, with Trump and his henchmen looking to up their deportation numbers, these families are being ripped apart, in our name and with our tax dollars. These ‘silent raids’ violate common sense and common decency.