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Home Sections Politics Rep. Brad Sherman Takes Up Cudgels for Filipino Harvard Graduate Who Is Being Deported
Rep. Brad Sherman Takes Up Cudgels for Filipino Harvard Graduate Who Is Being Deported PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - Politics
Wednesday, 22 December 2010 09:24

 

By JOSEPH G. LARIOSA

Journal Group Link International)

 

U.S. Congressman Sherman Takes Up Cudgels for Filipino Harvard Magna Cum Laude Graduate Who Is Being Deported

 

C HICAGO (jGLi) – Rep. Brad Sherman (D-27th- CA) asked Tuesday (Dec. 21) the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to join Mark Farrales in his request to re-open his immigration case before the U.S. Board of Immigration Appeals “as an individual and not being (lumped) with his deceased father” in the case.

 

A spokesman of Representative Sherman also told this reporter that Congressman Sherman made the request in a letter sent to ICE.

 

Mr. Farrales is the 31-year-old Filipino magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University, who was arrested by ICE agents in his Reseda, Los Angeles, California, home “for being in the country illegally.” He is being processed for deportation to the Philippines.

 

A re-opening of his case will buy Mr. Farrales time to find ways to legalize his stay in the United States.

 

Meanwhile, a spokesperson of Sen. Barbara Boxer (Dem.-CA) said, “Mark Farrales’ lawyer reached out to us just recently on this situation. Senator Boxer is reviewing the case.”

 

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Dem.-CA) is still waiting for some documents from Farrales’ lawyer before she files a private bill before the U.S. Congress that could grant Farrales U.S. citizenship.

 

Farrales’ lawyer, Leon Hazany, approached Senators Feinstein and Boxer and Rep. Sherman to file a private bill on behalf of Farrales.

 

The filing of the private bill will delay Farrales’ deportation and could give him time to find ways to legalize his stay in the U.S.

 

Had It Passed, the DREAM Act Would Have Ended Farrales’ Immigration Nightmare

 

F arrales would not have gone into this predicament had the U.S. Senate passed the DREAM Act last Saturday.

 

The legislation, also known as the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act (the DREAM), would have extended a path to citizenship to illegal and deportable alien students who graduate from US high schools, who are of good moral character and have been in the country continuously and illegally for at least five years prior to the bill's enactment, the opportunity to earn conditional permanent residency if they complete two years in the military or two years at a four-year institution of higher learning.

 

The bill came up short of passage by five votes in the Senate, 55-41. But it hurdled the House by a vote of 216 to 198.

 

Farrales arrived in the U.S. with his parents in 1990 when he was ten years old just days before his father, Jaime Farrales, a lawyer, was shot outside their home in Quezon City in the Philippines.

 

Before his family’s visas expired, his father applied for political asylum, saying that they are fleeing from his attackers.

 

The petition for asylum was denied but his father appealed. However, when his father died in 2006, the petition appeared to have been denied as well before the Board of Immigration Appeals.

 

Farrales would have been one of the more than 1.7-million youngsters who would have benefited by the passage of the DREAM Act.

 

Farrales' father was a prominent lawyer who often spoke out against government corruption and had just announced a bid for the Philippine Congress.

 

While his two other sisters found a way to legalize their stay by marrying U.S. citizens, Farrales kept on attending schools.

 

Farrales became a valedictorian at Belmont High School, graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University with a degree in government, earned a master's degree at University of California in San Diego and was pursuing a doctorate there when he was arrested.

 

A deportation order and a warrant of arrest were issued against Farrales.

 

According to immigration authorities, the immigration courts have “consistently held that Mr. Farrales does not have legal basis to remain in the United States. He remains in ICE custody while the agency makes preparations to carry out the removal order.” # # #

 

Editor’s Note: To contact the author, please e-mail him at:  (lariosa_jos@sbcglobal.net)

 



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Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 December 2010 09:30
 

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