A new film in making its rounds at arts festivals and in cinemas. A Florida man who emigrated to the United States from another country of origin is one of the film’s key figures. In it, the man speaks about civil rights violations and dire conditions in one of the state’s for-profit immigration detention centers. Many believe it was his participation in the film that prompted U.S. immigration law officers to arrest him, allegedly without cause.
The man recently showed up for a scheduled immigration appointment regarding his visa. An official reportedly announced his name to call him forward for the meeting. He never made it to the designated area, however, because several Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers swooped in and took him into custody.
An attorney speaking on the man’s behalf says he has no criminal record. The attorney also stated that the man did not receive due process and was denied access to legal support; he was also stripped of his passport. This attorney and others working together to try to rectify the situation believe there was no cause to arrest their client and that he is now at risk for deportation for no reason other than his participation in the film, which revealed injustices in a state detention facility.
Florida ICE officials are said to have told the man’s attorneys that their orders were coming from higher levels and there was nothing they could say to the man that would change the situation. It is not the first time U.S. immigration law officers have been accused of violating an immigrant’s personal rights. Any man or woman who encounters a similar problem can exercise his or her rights by immediately requesting legal representation.