“Good afternoon.This is to confirm that your client Mr. Villatoro was removed to Honduras today. He has landed. Thank you”.

This is how ICE informed me today that they’d deported Pastor Max Villatoro, a dedicated huMax and Wifesband, father of four (4) US citizen children, and religious leader.   This is how they announced they’ve banished a man who has lived in the U.S. for more than 2 decades, raised a family, worked hard and earned the respect and support of his community.

President Obama promised he’d prioritize the removal of “felons, not families; gang members not moms….”  When Mr. Obama announced his immigration executive actions on November 20, 2014 I thought the years of chaotic, haphazard immigration enforcement were behind us; that common sense enforcement would be the rule, not the exception.

Today I fear a new, more unforgiving era of senseless enforcement has only just begun.  Worse  yet, I fear for the millions of mixed immigration status American families who, as of tonight, are in greater danger of losing a loved one to deportation.

About David Leopold
Past President American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), In-the-Trenches practicing immigration Attorney, Blogger, Activist, Photographer, Educator, World Traveler. All opinions are my own.

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