People who know a 47-year-old man who was living in a church basement in another state say he was merely doing what he had to do to be with his wife, who is extremely ill and in need of heart surgery. There are likely immigrants living in Florida who are worried about similar issues. This particular man was working on obtaining an adjustment of status when he wound up getting arrested.
The man’s son was also arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. The situation initially unfolded when the father was summoned to appear at a biometrics appointment, supposedly as part of his status adjustment process. He showed up for the appointment but soon found himself surrounded by ICE officers who began to force him into the back of a nearby van.
The son tried to keep the ICE officials from taking his father away. They arrested the younger man, who has since been charged with assaulting a government official. A large number of supporters also approached the van to try to help the father and son. Police warned them to back off or face arrest; in the end, 20 people were taken into custody.
ICE officers say they were acting within U.S. immigration law regulations because the man in question was convicted of falsifying identification documents to enter the United States, some years ago. There may be families in Florida who can relate to this situation. Those who have been threatened with removal may request legal support at any time.