Petition Closed

Detained since September of 2009, Pedro Guzman is eligible for relief under NACARA (the Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act, which provides protection to certain nationals who arrived in this country fleeing persecution prior to 1990), but has been systematically denied the protection awarded to him by law.

Pedro's story is a tangled-up web of unfortunate bureaucratic mistakes and faulty processes — so much so it's almost hard to follow. Imagine how Pedro and his family feel. A man like Pedro, who qualifies for protection under law, deserves to stay. Help Pedro and his family by sending this message to the Department of Homeland Security.

Letter to
Assistant Secretary of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Assistant Secretary John Morton
Secretary of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano
I am writing to urge you to immediately release Pedro Guzman, A# 072-540-471, a Guatemalan man who has been in immigration detention since September of 2009, and provide him relief under NACARA.

Pedro is a NACARA applicant who has successfully applied for annual work visas for ten years. The majority of Pedro's family has already been granted NACARA and under the statute, so should Mr. Guzman. However, his judge erroneously contends that he doesn't qualify.

Pedro was originally ordered to appear before immigration court in 2007 following his mother's NACARA denial (she is elderly, and received no counsel or support during her interview). Despite the fact that DHS had Pedro's correct address on file, the order to appear was sent to the wrong address. So was the subsequent deportation order. That same year, his awarded work visa was sent to the correct address, and DHS has since acknowledged its internal administrative mistake. The deportation order was issued only after his understandable "failure to appear," and Pedro did not receive the deportation order until months after it was sent to the same incorrect address. Unfortunately, this particular judge seems to be using the fact of Mr. Guzman's ignorance of his original order to appear (due to a DHS administrative failure) against him in court.

BIA recommended the issuance of a bond in Pedro's case, which the judge summarily ignored. Right after he denied bond, he ordered Mr. Guzman deported. Pedro's attorneys appealed to the BIA in May, but no decision has been made.

Pedro made minor drug possession mistakes in his youth (one of which has since been vacated by the state of California) but since becoming an adult, he has been a law-abiding, tax-paying member of society and a dedicated father and husband to a U.S.-born citizen, with an annually-renewed work visa.

I urge you to release Pedro on bond immediately, and vacate his deportation order. Pedro qualifies for NACARA--which was created to protect individuals just like him--and should not spend another day in detention and away from his family.

Please, do the right thing and immediately release Pedro Guzman, A# 072-540-471.


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