Immigration Officials Deports U.S. Citizen To Save A Couple Bucks

Proponents of the Arizona approach to immigration reform like to argue that it is easy to tell the difference between those who are in this country illegally from U.S. citizens.  They should try telling that to Monica Castro.

After a violent fight with the father of her young daughter, Castro, a fourth-generation American citizen, fled to the local Border Patrol station.  There she said she would provide the agents information about her daughter’s father, a Mexican who was in the country illegally, if the agents would help her get back her daughter.

Castro provided agents the information they requested and, in the raid that ensued, federal agents seized, then deported, her daughter Rosa.  Rosa, like her mother, is an American citizen.  At the time of her deportation Rosa was only a year old.

It would be three years before Ms. Castro would see her daughter again.

Despite frantic pleas and legal action the U.S. government was little help to Ms. Castro in locating her daughter.  All immigration authorities told the distraught mother was that her daughter had been sent to Juarez, Mexico along with the girl’s father–who Castro was trying to protect Rosa from.

It wasn’t until the girl’s father was once again arrested for entering the country illegally that Ms. Castro had any hope of recovering her daughter.  As part of his plea arrangement he agreed to return Rosa.

Castro’s situation has garnered a lot of attention as a perfect descriptor of all that is wrong with immigration enforcement.  Federal agents acted rashly and with incomplete information.  Castro, a U.S. citizen, was treated with suspicion and derision because of her Latino heritage.  The judicial system ignored her pleas along every step of the way.

When pressed for an explanation as to why immigration agents made the hasty decision to deport Castro’s daughter their response strained credibility.  According to the government, it would have been far to costly to figure out little Rosa’s citizenship status prior to deportation.  When asked to quantify just how much it would cost, immigration officials put the total at about $200.

That’s right.  The United States government deported a U.S. citizen, separated her from her birthmother for three years, just to save a couple hundred bucks.

Castro has petitioned the United States Supreme Court to take up her case, arguing that the border patrol agents should not take the place of family courts in making custody determinations. 

photo courtesy of Barnaby via Flickr

99 comments

William C
William Cabout a year ago

Thanks for caring.

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W. C
W. C2 years ago

Thank you.

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Mercedes Lackey
Mercedes Lackey7 years ago

Sue T you are yet another example of the ignorant know it all who sees "Hispanic" and thinks "illegal" and doesn't ever bother to read past the whole story. But why should you bother? Your mind is already made up, why confuse it with facts when you can rely completely on your own bigoted opinion?

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kathleen u.
Kathy C8 years ago

what a unjust situtation,whats wrong with our goverment.

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Nellie K A.
Nellie K Adaba8 years ago

It's an outrage

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Claire M.
Claire M8 years ago

This case needs to be highlighted. Personally I think there should be legal action against the agency responsible. This child was sent to a foreign country in the hands of a violet father who may have done horrible things to her.
There is no justification for this no matter what the argument.

As for people who have no sympathy, life has a way of teaching you just how it feels to be on the other side of that perspective.

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Christine G.
Past Member 8 years ago

@mcunningham - How have they been damaged? Please remember both of these individuals are American citizens. The fact that she was involved with an undocumented person, or that the father is not American is not relevant to this case as this does not have any bearing whatsoever on the citizenship of either party in question. The woman's child was kidnapped and taken out of the country. What kind of distress do you think this created? The little girl was without her mother for several years. How did this affect the poor kid, and could this have an impact on the child in the years to come? You can't blame the parties, (no matter how much you object to their life choices), for the US Government's denial of their civil rights and their subsequent illegal action. There is no excuse of violation of the constitutional rights of an American citizen. Damaged? You bet.

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ChanTlalok Rain C.

thanx Jessica, God bless!!

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Alexandra O.
Alex O8 years ago

Sue - You win the Idiot of the year award! This was a small child who was an american citizen, as was her mother. She should have never, ever been deported, especially with the abusive father. You actually think it's okay to separate a small child from her mother for no good reason? You think it's okay to deny the mother her rights under the law? Remember, both mother and daughter are AMERICAN. You obviously didn't read the entire article or more probable you didn't comprehend it. Hope this mother and child will finally get the justice they deserve, unfortunately, they will never get those years back that were lost due to laziness and ignorance.

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Mary Johnston
Mary Johnston8 years ago

Sue, did you actually read the entire article. The mother is a FORTH GENERATION American citizen. Her daughter is a natural citizen..she was born here and her mother is a citizen..making her a citizen. The only illegal here was the father. The fact that Immigration acted without any care or time doesn't surprise me. She and her daughter both were robbed of their rights because our government was too lazy too ensure that little girl's safety.

I don't agree with illegal immigrant either, but make sure they are before you judge.

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