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February 24, 2010

Immigration court in TN can't keep up with caseload

By Janell Ross • THE TENNESSEAN • February 24, 2010

"Mario Ramos had heard stories. But last month, he finally saw for himself.

“It really looked like there were 1,000 people in that ICE line,” said Ramos, a Nashville immigration lawyer. “And those are just the people in Nashville who are on the wait list for an immigration court
date to be set.”

The immigration court has such a heavy caseload that hundreds of people recommended for deportation haven’t even been given a court date yet. They line up monthly at local immigration offices, where suspected illegal immigrants are asked to check in until a court date can be set.

After three years of stepped-up immigration enforcement, the overloaded court system isn’t keeping pace — and observers say almost nowhere in the country is the problem worse than in
Tennessee.

The Memphis-based immigration court — which handles most immigration matters in Tennessee, Arkansas, Kentucky and the northern half of
Mississippi — has one of the nation’s highest caseloads per judge. In 2008, the most recent year for which data are available, Memphis had only two judges to handle about 3,500 pending cases.

About four weeks ago, the situation in Memphis went from busy to something worse. One of the judges was reassigned to Arlington, Va. Now, while there is a judge in one Memphis courtroom, cases
assigned to the other are heard by a constantly rotating cast of judges around the country via video conference.

Less than two full months into 2010, just about any hearing requested is scheduled in 2011.

Family waits and hopes

Jose Resendiz is an illegal immigrant from Mexico with a story that highlights the problems in Tennessee and the need for real immigration reform, said his wife, Christy Resendiz.

He has lived in a state of limbo since his arrest in 2008.

Christy, a U.S. citizen, and Jose, a Mexican national, live with their two children in Greenback, Tenn., about 45 minutes from Knoxville. The couple married in July 2003 and started trying to adjust Jose’s legal status almost right away, Christy said. They expected it to be straightforward, since Jose had married an American citizen, but an ill-timed trip back to Mexico derailed the process...".

at; http://www.tennessean.com/article/20100224/NEWS03/100223128/2066

Posted by VisaLawyer at 08:04 AM | Comments (0)

February 16, 2010

Why we need immigration reform; DEA supervisor exposes cover-up of U.S. agents' role in mass murder in Mexico

"April 1, 2005—DEA supervisor Sandalio Gonzalez hit a nerve when he fired off a letter in February 2005 to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials in El Paso, Texas.

Gonzalez' letter blew the whistle on the alleged cover-up of ICE agents' complicity in multiple murders in the Mexican border town of Ciudad Juárez. The homicides were tied to an investigation into Heriberto Santillan-Tabares, who U.S. prosecutors claim is a top lieutenant in Vicente Carrillo Fuentes' Juárez drug organization.

Santillan has been charged with cocaine and marijuana smuggling along with five counts of murder—a crime that can get him a death sentence in the U.S. justice system. His case is currently pending in federal district court in San Antonio, Texas, and is slated for trial in May.

A confidential informant, who allegedly had attained high standing within the Juárez organization, played a critical role in snaring Santillan. The informant's name is Jesus Contreras, who is also known by the nickname "Lalo."

Between August 2003 and mid-January 2004, a dozen people were tortured, murdered and then buried in the yard of a house in the Mexican border town of Ciudad Juárez. Contreras, according to sources, participated in many of those murders."...

at http://onlinejournal.org/Special_Reports/040105Conroy/040105conroy.html

Posted by VisaLawyer at 09:14 AM | Comments (0)

February 10, 2010

Take the gloves off and allow immigration help our nation

President Obama & the US Congress need to take the gloves off limiting immigration to the US. Restrictive policies have achieved the goal of strangling the American dream. Every day I talk to immigrants wealthy and workers who want to help the US.

In a time of need why close our borders? Real Change is needed to help America remain the bright city upon the hill.

Posted by VisaLawyer at 06:37 AM | Comments (0)

February 04, 2010

Tea Party & Immigrants

Many people ask me how immigrants view the Tea Party being held today in Nashville. So I have decided examine where we see eye to eye on the issues.

At the Tea Party Nation (TPN) website; www.teaparty.com the TPN are "a group of like-minded people who desire our God given Individual Freedoms which were written out by the Founding Fathers. We believe in Limited Government, Free Speech, the 2nd Amendment out Military, Secure Border and our County!".

So let compare and contrast;

Well, Hispanics in the US are a like minded group united by food, languages, music, culture etc.

God; most Hispanics believe in god and are catholic; isn’t this the same?

Limited Government; Hispanics have been seeking a reduction in immigration enforcement/incarceration/deportation for decades. Hispanics want to get immigration off the back of immigrants. There are hundreds of thousands of Hispanics in jail in the U.S under immigration charges. Undocumented Hispanics receive NO benefits from the Federal/State government. The restrictions on government benefits extend to legal spouses of undocumented. In a way Hispanics are living a life of limited government that TPN cannot dream of in their wildest limited government dreams.

Free Speech; yes, except for hate speech directed towards advocates of immigration reform and minorities.

The 2nd Amendment; the right to bear arms; Here I will digress into my personal story. My father was from Colombia, South America and was an avid gun enthusiast. My childhood consisted of visiting every gun club in the South of the US. So my opinion is distorted on this issue as I believe in the right to bear arms but do not believe most people should carry a gun. It is extremely difficult to shoot a gun well. If you have not shoot a gun over 25,000 times do not call me about my opinion; keep on practicing.

Our military; around 10% of the military is Hispanic, next; see http://www.prb.org/Articles/2007/HispanicsUSMilitary.aspx


Secure Borders; Hispanics strongly support comprehensive immigration reform which will free up resources which are misdirected towards deporting tax paying undocumented workers. The current situation is like the prohibition of alcohol which was a failure and lead to widespread organized crime; it is interesting how history repeats itself; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prohibition

Our Country; As part of the largest minority in the US I am amazed at the civility of Hispanics during the current state of enforcement which is as sever as apartheid ever was in South Africa as per the President of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Bernard Woldsdorf, who is originally from South Africa.

Posted by VisaLawyer at 12:39 PM | Comments (0)

Facing Our Future: Children in the Aftermath of Immigration Enforcement

To see about about consequences of the deporting the parents of US citizen. Remember that there are 5.5 million children with unauthorized parents, (a little less than the population of the entire state of Tennessee) almost three-quarters of whom are U.S.-born citizens. Over several years, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) intensified enforcement activities through large-scale worksite arrests, home arrests, and arrests by local law enforcement.

A new report released today by the Urban Institute, titled "Facing Our Future: Children in the Aftermath of Immigration Enforcement," examines the consequences of parental arrest, detention, and deportation on 190 children in 85 families in six locations, providing in-depth details on parent-child separations, economic hardships, and children's well-being. The report also provides recommendations for stakeholders to mitigate the harmful effects of immigration enforcement on children.

For more information, read the full report at the Urban Institute website; http://www.urban.org/uploadedpdf/412020_FacingOurFuture_final.pdf

Posted by VisaLawyer at 09:05 AM | Comments (0)

February 02, 2010

Immigration Reform is Necessary for America's Economic Recovery

There is an excellent article in The Huffington Post discussing the economic need for immigration reform. Prior to the great depression restrictive laws were passed on immigration in the US and around the world. Freeing up immigration helped lead to the recovery.

Go to;

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-creamer/immigration-reform-is-nec_b_445688.html

Posted by VisaLawyer at 08:13 AM | Comments (0)