RI mother released from ICE custody

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A wife and mother who’s been in the custody of immigration officials for nearly a month was allowed Tuesday to return home to her family.

Martin Harris, the attorney for Lilian Calderon, confirmed for Eyewitness News that his client was released from ICE custody in Massachusetts Tuesday afternoon.

Harris said the lawsuit opposing her deportation must still be resolved, but immigration officials decided to release her after consideration of motion made by her attorney.

Calderon was brought to the United States from Guatemala when she was 3 years old. She grew up in Providence and married Gordillo, her high school sweetheart and an American citizen. The couple has two young children.

Harris said Calderon was applying for lawful permanent resident status last month when ICE took her into custody.

He said Calderon had applied for protection under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), also known as the “Dreamer” act, but it was denied because the government wasn’t satisfied with the amount of documentation. According to court documents, there wasn’t enough to prove that Calderon had been in the United States constantly since she arrived. Without a Social Security number, Harris noted, it’s hard for an undocumented immigrant to get a bank account and so many other things that would create a paper trail.

A judge ruled earlier this month that Calderon could not be removed from Massachusetts while a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union was pending.

Harris said it was unclear if Calderon could be re-arrested later, but he stressed that there was still a lot of work to be done on the case.