The first case under the Trump administration regarding the Dream Act looks to be a long and drawn out one in getting the facts straight. The federal government is giving one version of the story while attorneys for a deported young man are saying another and are taking their case to court.
Juan Manuel Montes-Bojorquez, 23, had been living in the United States since he was nine years old and had been granted protection from being deported under former president Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, also known as the Dream Act or DACA.
While in the U.S., Montes-Bojorquez was convicted on four separate occasions of various crime – one for shoplifting in January 2016 and three for driving without a license, the most recent in January 2017. But even with those violations, he still qualified to remain in the country under the rules Obama put in place.
The main question arises from what occurred – or may have occurred – between February 18 and 19 of this year. Montes-Bojorquez claims that he was stopped by Customs and Border Protection agents in Calexico, California and asked to show his identification. He told the officers that he left his wallet – which included his DACA paperwork that allows him to be in the U.S. until 2018 – in a friend’s house nearby but they would not allow or accompany him there to retrieve it. Montes-Bojorquez claims that he was brought to a detention facility, told to sign papers and then deported to Mexico.
The United States Department of Homeland Security denies this account and has stated that Montes-Bojorquez was in fact apprehended on February 18 “minutes after” he was observed climbing over a border fence. He was questioned, admitted that he was entering the U.S. illegally and deported.
CBP released a statement that included, “During Mr. Montes-Bojorquez’s detention and arrest by the United States Border Patrol on February 19, he admitted to agents that he had illegally entered the United States and was arrested. Even if Montes-Bojorquez had informed agents of his DACA status, he had violated the conditions of his status by breaking continuous residency in the United States by leaving and then reentering the U.S. illegally.”
Attorneys for Montes-Bojorquez filed a lawsuit in California federal court requesting that CBP release their records pertaining to their encounters with him.
H/T: Washington Times
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