Family and Immigration Law Attorney. Moonlighting as a queer, POC fiction lover and writer. Avid Bollywood fan.

Posts tagged ICE


Apr 22, 2014
@ 9:18 am

10 notes

"That Awkward Moment When You Run Away from Your Home Country Due to Discrimination For Being Queer, To Be Locked Up in the Land of the Free..." »

Full text: “That awkward moment when you run away from your home country due to discrimination for being queer…Only to be locked up in the land of the free with a lot of machista, and sexist, homophobic, transphobic ICE officers.” – Alejandro Aldana

Yesterday, I received this bittersweet postcard from my dear friend, Alex Aldana, who is currently detained at the Otay Detention Facility in San Diego.

Alex lived with his family in California for ten years, where he graduated from high school and worked hard to make his community a better place. He left the U.S. to go back to Mexico five months ago to care for his sick grandmother.

Over these past few months, Alex discovered how crime and corruption made life particularly difficult for the LGBTQ community in Mexico. In Guadalajara alone, 128 gay and lesbian people have been killed, and none were reported as hate crimes. Now, Alex wants to return to California, where his mother and sibling reside so that he can continue to take care of them, and lead a life that does not entail the amount of violence he would face if he remained in Mexico.

Even with the heightened standard for credible fear instituted by the new Lafferty memo in light of the numerous claims for asylum from Mexico and Central America, Alex has already passed his credible fear interview. This means that according to Immigration and Customs officials, Alex has established a clear and convincing chance of winning asylum before an Immigration Judge based on his fear of persecution in Mexico. According to ICE guidelines, Alex should be released from detention to pursue his asylum case as he is neither a threat nor a flight risk. However, he has been detained at Otay for more than a month for no real reason, and subjected to abuse inside the facility.


Apr 26, 2013
@ 2:55 pm

13 notes

La Kemster: Of MICE and Women »


Before you read this, please visit and sign the petition & share if you haven’t already. Then come back if you’d like.

Of MICE and Women

Desperate to get back home to babes
Whose mouths have not tasted her milk in far too many days,
Back to a husband too distraught to brush hair or tie shoelaces,
Now unemployed, the nearly empty fridge haunting him in his sleep.
He reaches over the pillow and her hand is not there but her heart is.
Her heart is, and so she gives in and signs voluntary departure,
though no free will is present in the room.

Her apology echoes off the walls as she leaves,
Neck forever cramped from looking back to those still caged within
Checking that the pieces of herself placed strategically-
dignity preserved in the folds of her uniform,
strength wrapped tenderly around the steel bars,
hope tucked into dusty corners of cement-
will keep her comrades company until they too are free.

It’s like they put her on death row
With a final order of removal to execute the ghost of her American presence.
They didn’t even offer her a final meal,
though tonight their own children will eat the tomatoes that her husband picked in the fields
for dinner and be satisfied.
They will be satisfied, while her own children remain hungry for justice.

Infiltration is such a strong word.
But you must learn to hold its heat in your mouth,
Press its discomfort into the backs of your teeth,
Swish it around until your throat burns from its consequence,
Lest they pry it from your lips like they did your native tongue.

In our hands, we hold the umbrellas that keep us in the shadows.
But we are too fearful of reclaiming sunlight to let them go,
and it is not even raining.
It is not even raining yet our thoughts of self-hate strike us like thunder,
leaving the faint scent of burnt melanin in its wake.

Our bodies have been stripped of their majesty,
And we are now too comfortable being wallflowers.
We tiptoe around as if society is a minefield,
Yet it is in her heart where she has hidden that grenade,
And every “Go Back to Mexico” sends her trembling hand
Inching closer to pull that pin and detonate her dreams so she no longer has to defer them.

Infiltration is such a strong word.
It’s more like stepping into the future to pay a visit to ourselves
Like looking into the mirror and discovering that
Your reflection has been deported in your absence.

If there are truly spoils of war,
Then we are all the trophies of white supremacy,
Generations upon generations of cheap labor
Provided by disposable brown bodies that need never reach for the American Dream,
because it is an exercise in futility.

Have we come this far, that we can no longer dream in the language of our ancestors?

Have we come this far, that even our dreams are defined by imperialism?

That our self-loathing is tied to our survival?

That our success is couched in Western ideals?

Illegal. I am illegal.

We have to confront the ugly in ourselves if we are ever to overcome it.
We have to confront the ugly in our struggle if we are ever to overcome it.
We have to confront the ugly in our communities if we are ever to overcome it.

So let us be ugly together.

Let us be ugly together, for ugly pain yields power
Like the contractions that come before giving birth.
It teaches you how to scream after years of being told you have no voice.
Ugly pain refuses to be swept under the rug,
to be bribed by gilded handcuffs wrapped in a freedom gift box.

Ugly pain does not forget.

Ugly pain does not forget. 

Ugly pain does not forget. 

It does not hide the battle scars that are only visible to the battle-weary.

Illegal is such a strong word.
But it, too, must come out of the shadows.
Though at times we must wrap ourselves
in the security blanket and safety of undocumented to survive,
It is time to don our illegal suit of armor
And prepare to go to war with our internalized hate,
Swords of forgiveness raised to the sky,
Leaving empty shells of our egos scattered across the battlefield.

No one tells you what happens to the butterfly
After that first part of its migration.

No one will say that low priority
Is still a priority.

No one will blink an eye when you shout
That they are locking us up without a reason.

No one will shake their head if they knew that
Private prisons cash in on every immigrant body.

No one will believe you when you explain that
Deport Them All is not just a magic trick.
It is real.

Deport them all was two suicide attempts for Yanelli
Deport them all is a broken tail light for Wanda,
is driving while brown for Gustavo,
is coughing up blood for Maria.
Deport them all is working without papers for Adelaida,
is being in the passenger’s seat for Everilda,
who was being sent back to Guatemala
where her five family members were assassinated,
with a target on her back.
It is real. It is no magic trick or prophecy. It is today.

And tomorrow, what if we said, deport me instead?
Our collective ugly would be beautiful.
We could swell jail cells with our capacity,
like they rob us short of our humanity.
We could offer up our bodies like sacrificial lambs in orange jumpsuits
And dare them to feast on their own shame.

And what if we do nothing,
Grip our umbrellas tight until our knuckles turn white?
Do not let me lose this battle with my own complacency.
Do not let me face these demons alone.

Let us be ugly together.
So tired from fighting that that only way to stand shoulder to shoulder
Is if we lean on each other.
Let the blood from my wounds drip into yours and make us family.
Let us drill holes in each others pipelines
So that yellow and brown and black bodies may breathe shared oxygen.

Let us be ugly together.
Let us be ugly for our mothers for whom this country’s beauty has forsaken,
for our fathers who leave their dignity behind at home for safekeeping
before standing in parking lots for livelihood.
And if the callouses on their hands could speak,
they would yell, “Pick me! Choose me! Open the door, America. Please, just open the door.”

Let us be ugly together.
I’ll show you my pain if you show me your truth.
Let us shrug off this cloak of pretense and open the curtains of rhetoric.
Let me take your hand in mine and hold it so tight that
Our grip will send a message that Enough! Not. One. More.

Let us be ugly together.
Let us do it for them,
of MICE and women,
so that we may one day,
do it for ourselves.


Nov 28, 2012
@ 1:01 am

44 notes




“We’ve officially infiltrated the Stewart Detention Center in Georgia! Look for a set of new low-priority cases coming out of that center and help us demand a stop to all low-priority cases! 

The Stewart Detention Center in Georgia is home to 1800 immigrants who have been detained and are being processed for deportation. These are folks that the Obama administration doesn’t want you to know about. Today we are excited to announce that one of those beds is occupied by a National Immigrant Youth Alliance organizer. 

President Barack Obama if you say you aren’t deporting low-priority individuals then we better not find any inside Stewart…

If you can help support this project by donating to the Georgia Detention Camp account. We specifically need help with the phone account as we’ve spent about $250 in the past week!” -VIA DreamActivist.Org

(via la-hoops-deactivated20131109)


Jul 23, 2012
@ 10:09 pm

72 notes

Take Action: 10 Urgent Deportation Cases That Need Your Help – Detained for 8+ Months at Broward

We have 10 deportation cases we are hoping you can help us out with, if you think you can help just click the link for each case and take a minute to sign the petition and to make a phone call. Each of these detainees are being held at the Broward Detention Center and all of them are low-priority cases, the same cases President Obama, through John Morton, promised to stop deporting.

Claudio Rojas originally from Argentina has been living in Florida for over 12 years. Claudio has been detained since February 10th, 2012. Claudio has no criminal record, he was detained after he was called to pick up his son who had been stopped at the convention center. On Thursday, July 19th, Claudio’s Stay of Removal was rejected.

Cesar Leon originally from Venezuela has been living in Florida for over 13 years. Cesar has been detained since April 20th, 2012. Cesar has no criminal record, he was detained after his asylum case was rejected. ICE has already attempted to put Cesar on a plane once, his time is running out.

Maria Leon originally from Venezuela, has been living in Florida for over 5 years. Maria is married to a United States citizen, her marriage application has already been approved and her interview is supposed to be on Wednesday, July 25th, however ICE still refuses to release her. While living in Venezuela Maria worked as a flight attendant on the presidential plane, she worked for President Chavez.

Mohammed Sooknanan, originally from Guyana, has been detained since December 6th, 2011, over 9 months ago! Mohammed has no criminal record, he was detained for driving with an expired tag. Mohammed’s marriage application is pending, he has never been deported before and is not a flight risk yet Judge Rex refuses to release him.

Charles Rodriguez, originally from Nicaragua, has been living in Florida for over 15 years. Charles has no criminal record, he’s been detained since May 9th, 2012. Charles was detained while going to work, he was asked for an ID at the stadium he was working at and a few hours later police showed up to detain him.

Samuel Sotooriginally from Honduras, has been living in Florida for over 14 years. He has four children who miss him very much, all four of his kids are currently undergoing therapy because of their fathers detention. Samuel has only been pulled over for driving without a license. Samuel’s daughter, Eda, is having surgery on her left ear on August 8th. Samuel has been detained since May 16th, 2012.

Gelmino Turraoriginally from Uruguay, has been living in Florida for over 13 years. In 2002 Gelmino was nearly murdered. He has since filed for a U-visa, given to victims of serious crimes, however Judge Rex Ford refuses to release him. Gelmino has been detained since December 19th, 2012. Gelmino’s 7-year old son has threatened suicide over his dad’s detention.

Luis Villanuevaoriginally from Mexico, has been living in the United States for over 10 years. Luis has no criminal record and yet he has been detained inside of the detention center since before Thanksgiving (November 7th, 2011)! Luis is a day laborer, he was picked up in front of Home Depot without being given any warning or anything. Luis’ father has been murdered and he is currently being sought out by the same people.

Maximino Hozoriginally from Mexico, has been living in Flordia for over 19 years. He has 6 children who miss him and want him home. Maximino’s 9-year old son has been diagnosed with depression because of his dad’s detention since December of 2011, over 9 months ago! In 2003 Maximino was charged with a DUI, however he took care of it, paid all of his fines and has never been in trouble since.

Omar Ramirez, originally from Guatemala, has been living in Florida for over 12 years. He has no criminal record yet he has spent the last 9-months, since November of 2011, in detention at the Broward Transitional Center. Omar was profiled by local police and found to have no license. Omar’s 10-year old son suffers from Asthma and has hearing problems.

For each day someone is detained at the Broward Transitional Center the facility is making on average $166. At some point these detainees are becoming just another dollar for the GEO company. We need to hold ICE and President Obama accountable for what they are doing to our communities. Unless we take action these 10 families are going to become just another statistic.

Can you sign each petition, make a call and share it with a friend?

Claudio Rojas, detained since February of 2012. No criminal record.


Apr 23, 2012
@ 11:57 am

32 notes

Diabetic Faces Deportation For Calling An Ambulance »

On March 3rd Claudio’s life changed forever. As he sat waiting in his car for his wife and 4 year old son to run some errands he began convulsing. Claudio is a type 2 diabetic, he had recently been put on new medication and was suffering a possible side effect. 

A store employee saw what was happening and called an ambulance. The employee then saw Claudio vomiting on himself and called for an ambulance again. Still no ambulance came. The employee called an ambulance 3 times and 30 minutes later still no ambulance, however a police officer did show up. 

Instead of receiving medical care Claudio was arrested and eventually transferred to ICE for deportation. Since Claudio and his family entered on a visa waiver they have no rights to an immigration judge or hearing. Claudio is being told ‘the next plane for Argentina leaves Tuesday!’

Why did a simple call to an ambulance lead to deportation? We need to keep this family together. 


1. Sign this Petition

2. Make a Phone Call: Call ICE – John Morton (202.732.3000) 

Sample Script: I am calling to ask that ICE stop the deportation of Claudio Molina (A# 095-472-313). Claudio is type 2 diabetic, and began suffering from convulsions. Someone called an ambulance and instead police showed up and arrested Claudio. Claudio’s only crime is calling an ambulance for help! Stop his deportation.”


Nov 21, 2011
@ 12:56 pm

37 notes

The ugly truth of Obama’s government immigration policies comes out as Jonathan and Isaac, two undocumented youth are detained by Border Patrol in Alabama.


Also sign the petition to make sure they are release before the holidays!


Oct 5, 2011
@ 4:53 pm

8 notes

When is ICE raiding and deporting the worst criminals: Wall Street.

When is ICE raiding and deporting the worst criminals: Wall Street.


Sep 20, 2011
@ 12:56 am

18 notes

ICE Detainee Locator Tool

You locate ICE detainees using this online locator tool.

Make sure your loved ones know your A# or in the least, enough information about you to locate you.


Sep 1, 2011
@ 6:10 pm

11 notes

DHS Officials Admit To Being F***ked Up

In an email chain about “one of the DREAM [Act] kids” who was being detained by authorities suggests confusion at DHS regarding how to handle requests for “deferred action” from undocumented students. In the email chain ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) Chief of Staff Suzanne Barr writes to DHS Deputy Press Secretary Matthew Chandler, “we r f’ed up,” to which Chandler responds, “Yep. And we wonder why ppl FOIA us.” The student was granted astay of removal for six months.