The husband of a soldier who was killed while serving in Afghanistan was deported by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to Mexico last week. The man was detained and forced to leave the country despite being granted permission to stay, according to CNN.
U.S. Army soldier Barbara Vieyra was killed in Afghanistan in 2010. Her husband, Jose Gonzalez Carranza, was arrested on April 8 and taken to Nogales, Mexico, on April 10, leaving behind his daughter, who is now 12. Carranza’s lawyer, Ezequiel Hernandez, said that he attempted to reach out to ICE to find out why he was being deported, but his office was met with silence.
Carranza was issued a “parole in place” status after his wife as killed while serving the country. Army Pfc. Vieyra was killed at the age of 22 by insurgents in Afghanistan.
This designation gives undocumented relatives of U.S. veterans the opportunity to stay in the country. But despite this, ICE filed a deportation case against the man and the notice was sent to an old address, so he wasn’t able to reply. Because he was absent at the hearing, the judge reportedly ordered him deported out of the country.
Hernandez contacted the press after Carranza was deported, and ICE responded, allowing Carranza to return to Phoenix after the public outcry. The agency hasn’t given a reason for allowing him to return, though Carranza’s attorney believes the public response had a part. Hernandez called the deportation particularly cruel, given the experience that Carranza has had.
But even though he has been allowed back into the country, Carranza and his lawyer aren’t done with the situation.
“The government never revoked the (parole-in-place),” Carranza’s lawyer said. “They detained (Carranza) because of the order of removal done due to the court hearing my client did not go to because he did not know. As of today, we do not know why the client was removed.”
“I don’t know if they confused the papers or just didn’t follow orders,” he said about ICE.
Carranza tells @azdangonzalez that the entire experience of being deported was “traumatic,” and that he chose not to tell his daughter about his deportation in order to protect her emotionally. pic.twitter.com/K68RqpP1xM
— azcentral (@azcentral) April 16, 2019
Now, Carranza is waiting for a hearing with an immigration court to find out of his case can be reopened and the deportation order canceled.
The man is receiving support from his local lawmakers. Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, a Democrat, said that her office is “in communication with Mr. Carranza’s attorney and we will assist the Carranza family in this process.”
Carranza crossed the U.S. Mexico border illegally in 2004 and married Vieyra three years later.