Many Florida residents have trees in their yards. Sometimes, people cut their trees down for numerous reasons. One would not likely expect that cutting down a tree would spark U.S. immigration law problems, as it has apparently done in the case of a man who lives in another state.
This man says he was visiting one of his relatives and was helping to cut down a tree in the yard. He was then unexpectedly approached by officers from the Department of Natural Resources who reportedly told him that he did not have a license to cut down the tree. DNR officials later admitted that they had run a check on the man and learned that he was an undocumented immigrant.
The DNR officers are said to have handcuffed the man and taken him into custody. An immigrant advocate who is well-versed in such issues stated that the most that should have been done regarding the tree was to issue a fine. Many people have said that the man’s rights were violated. The situation escalated from there because the DNR officers later handed the man over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.
The man is currently being held in an immigration detention center, worried that U.S. immigration law officials will deport him to his country of origin, El Salvador. Florida immigrants facing similar legal status challenges may want to speak with an experienced attorney to seek guidance. The man in this case is reportedly filing a lawsuit on grounds that it was unlawful for DNR officers to hand him over to ICE.