Published: Wed, April 19, 2017
USA | By Cassandra Hanson

Lawsuit: Man deported after being part of protection program

More than 750,000 people, known as "Dreamers", received protected status in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. They must reapply every two years to keep their legal status, something his attorneys said he has done. There are an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the U.S. However, under the new policies enacted by Trump's executive orders, the criteria for border protection agents to detain and deport undocumented immigrants have expanded significantly.

In response to a request for comment by Reuters, a CPB spokesman said in an emailed statement that Montes had been apprehended "after illegally entering the United States by climbing over the fence in downtown Calexico".

Despite his criminal record, Montes did not expect to be kicked out of the U.S. But he's counting the days until he can return to the USA and continue building his life.

"I was forced out because I was nervous and didn't know what to do or say, but my home is there", said Montes in a statement released by his lawyers. Spokeswoman Jenny Burke said the department had no record of him renewing his DACA status after it expired in 2015, only a record of him being caught climbing the wall on February 19.

USA Today first reported about Montes' case.

Montes had left his wallet in a friend's auto so could not show identification or proof of his DACA status and was told by agents he could not go get them, the paper reported.

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Burke, the DHS spokeswoman, said the department had no record of Montes being arrested and deported from California as he described. "I miss my job. But most of all, I miss my family, and I have hope that I will be able to go back so I can be with them again".

"He was arrested by (Border Patrol) just minutes after he made his illegal entry and admitted under oath during the arrest interview that he had entered illegally", Hetlage told this newspaper in an email. The lawsuit says that while in Mexico, Montes was assaulted and fearing his life, illegally crossed into the U.S. again, where he was apprehended and detained before being removed once again to Mexico. Within three hours he was escorted to the border and left in Mexicali, Mexico.

Montes's attorneys filed a Freedom of Information Act request in March for information on his deportation. At one point, an assistant port director told the lawyers that he was having trouble finding the case, the lawsuit states.

Juan Manuel Montes, 23, is believed to be the first DACA recipient to be deported, an unprecedented move that activists argue proves Dreamers are also targeted for deportation under the administration. The paper did not correct her abuse of the term "immigrant", which refers to alien individuals given a permanent right to reside in the US and work without restrictions-not foreign criminals squatting on USA territory.

Other DACA recipients have been detained by immigration authorities in recent months, putting increased attention on the administration's handling of the program.

"We've seen Trump and (Department of Homeland Security Secretary) John Kelly say, 'The DACA program is alive and well.' We've seen (House Speaker) Paul Ryan look straight into the eyes of one of our members and say, 'You have nothing to worry about, '" she said.

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