Mar 242017
 

Photo: ICE.gov

Commentary by Arnaud and Naja Girard…….

The Blue Paper obtained ICE’s response to questions about the recent summary deportation of Key West workers holding valid work permits.

When Jean Dervil said good-bye to his wife Nephtalie before driving to Miami he had no idea he was about to enter a labyrinth; one that might actually have no exit. He was just going for a brief stop at the immigration office in Miramar. He had his 2017-2018 work permit in his pocket. This was just his yearly routine visit and he would then buy a gift for Nephtalie’s birthday, which fell the next day, and head back home to Key West.

The story of how Mr. Dervil was arrested on the spot by ICE officers as he walked in for the interview and how he was deported to Haiti in shackles left local legal and illegal Key West residents scrambling for answers.

The Blue Paper wrote to Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE], to ask why a man with no criminal record, married to an American citizen, had been deported in this manner, when he’d just been granted a renewal of his work permit.

This is the response we obtained from ICE this week.

On January 25, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order setting out deportation policies entitled, “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States.” It targets mostly criminal aliens but also those who are “subject to a final order of removal, but who have not complied with their legal obligation to depart the United States.”

How could that define Mr. Dervil, we asked. Obviously, once he was granted the right to work in this country, he was given a clear message that he was under no current “obligation” to leave. ICE however has a different understanding of the President’s order. This week ICE’s Public Affairs Officer, Nestor Yglesias, responded to the Blue Paper, stating that even though Mr. Dervil had been granted a work permit, valid till 2018, he was still under the “legal obligation” to leave the country.

We asked whether it was now ICE’s policy that every person allowed temporary entry under an “Order of Supervision” and granted a work authorization permit should leave immediately or face summary deportation. The answer is yes.

But what happened to the promise of going after the “dangerous criminal aliens” and to “working with” the good hard working ones? This is the answer frequently offered: ICE has inadequate enforcement resources, only about 6000 agents for the entire country. President Trump did put a priority on deporting criminals. To make it easier, he loosened the definition of criminal aliens to the extreme (one need not have been convicted or even charged with a crime, but simply “have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense.”) President Trump signed the order and we all sat back waiting for results as ICE went about rounding up thousands of “dangerous criminals.”

But here’s the rub: When you have only so many agents it is hard to build up impressive numbers of deportations of real criminals. Real criminals know how to hide, they are dangerous, often armed and they shoot back. So, it’s a lot easier to go after the soft targets, like docile honest people who go to work every day. And that’s where Mr. Dervil and his brethren come in. They walk right into the office, ready to be packaged for ICE’s thundering enforcement for the protection of good Americans against dangerous aliens, or so the numbers would have us believe.

According to local immigration attorney, Wayne Dapser, as many as 1000 Haitian workers in the Keys share the same status as Jean Dervil. We tried to contact Dervil several times in Haiti but finally his family told us, “He cannot talk.”  “Why can’t he talk to us?” we asked. “You don’t understand. It’s not that he doesn’t want to. He cannot talk … only cry.”

We are told Dervil will not be able to find a job in Haiti. He used to send money to his family there. Now he has none.

Is this deportation, without notice, really the only way to enforce immigration laws?   For instance, why couldn’t aliens, who have worked honestly here in the states, be given a year’s firm notice? With no expectation of a reprieve, aliens could try to save as much money as possible, sell their car, buy a little house in Haiti, maybe find a business partner in the U.S. among the employers who have come to trust them, start a little business back in their homeland…

It’s impossible to believe that this great country of ours cannot find a more flexible and less unpredictable way to address the state of misery and distress facing our immediate neighbors.

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Arnaud and Naja Girard
Arnaud and Naja Girard, owners and editors of the new, digital, Key West the Newspaper (The Blue Paper) previously reported for the former Key West The Newspaper, Key West’s longest running independent weekly, published by Dennis Reeves Cooper, Ph.D., from January 1994 until November 2012. The Girards are perhaps best known for their discovery of and extensive research surrounding the US Navy’s 1951 claim of ownership of Wisteria Island but are also responsible for top investigative stories including breaking news coverage of the highly controversial in-custody-death of Charles Eimers on Thanksgiving Day 2013, the catastrophic police tasing of Matthew Shawn Murphy, and the property tax scandal involving Balfour Beatty to name a few. Arnaud and Naja have lived in Key West since 1986.

  9 Responses to “ICE : Haitians with Valid Work Permits Must Leave the U.S.”

  1. At last, a definitive description of the policies and rationale that went into this infamous “immigration deportation”.

    ICE’s responses to your questions, are not in agreement with statements made by President Trump and his surrogates. Then again, their wording has always been vague and ambiguous. However, throughout the campaign it was clearly emphasized and hammered away at that “immigration deportations” would initially involve rounding up only “violent and dangerous immigrants”. Such was not the case in this instance.

    I recall during the campaign and its political rhetoric, a clear and succinct statement laying out the specific details and policies that would be enforced under President Trump’s “revised enforcement standards”; NEVER arouse, Nor came to light.

    I believe most citizens felt that the humanitarian and constitutional constructs upon which our nation was birthed, would prevail in developing and implementing any new approach towards our immigration law and policies.

    The trauma and suffering experienced by this man and his family, are troubling and heart wrenching.

    Just arrived home from our Theatrical Production in Miami (5:25 AM). Hope to expand upon this comment…

    Naja & Arnaud: Great work. Extraordinary article. Magnificent edition. Superb editing. Brilliant journalism. Thank you…

  2. I must say…a truly admirable piece of FINE journalism, Dear Editor! Your efforts to expose the developing scandal that is part of our current political landscape is bone-chilling, to say the least! And…you have authoritatively backed it up with thorough documentation, interspersed with in-depth perception…on all fronts. In sum, we can no longer turn the other cheek when confronted by the lies of the Trump administration. If we don’t wake up…and soon, we’re all slated for treatment comparable to that currently being suffered by the subjects of your thorough investigation: The only outstanding question is when…

    FWIW, I just read an article describing a new order that was just issued by our phantom Secretary of State to ALL of our Embassies. The gist of that memo requires a “hardening” (or “extreme vetting”) for ALL required travel document applications to the U.S. — for ANY purpose; from ANY country! This includes ALL classes of traveler, from tourist, student, worker, business purpose…to immigration, refugee (or humanitarian) status…whatever. I’ll leave it to your imagination as to what the consequences will turn out to be, once the “worker bees” in the bureaucracy get hold of this doozy! Those in the tourism, education and research & technology fields will be among the first to feel the effects…and they won’t be pretty. How soon before “they” come for “us”?

    Thank you both very much for your very valuable insights -and- high degree of professionalism in this matter! Your work richly deserves national/international exposure…

    Dickford

  3. Order out of chaos. First the chaos.

  4. The “shock and awe” ICE style, the brown shirts in advance of “rounding up the usual suspects” whatever the hell that is translated in today’s Trumpian dystopia, is repugnant.
    What we have emerging, is the smoldering, putrid stench of a totalitarian and authoritarian regime, but it doesn’t give real import to what is marching, nor can it all be at the curb of Trump’s Bannon and company coup. This is the decades long goose-step to what the Greeks have the descriptive understanding for what is occurring, and just as as they coined “democracy” as but one of 41 forms of government, they also gave us “kakistocracy” The American Heritage Dictionary defines it as a “government by the least qualified or most unprincipled citizens.” Webster’s is simpler: “government by the worst people.” The only form worse than this, is government run by goats.

    AND: http://amroali.com/2016/05/kakistocracy-rule-by-the-stupid-unqualified/
    We are in for one rocky ride as we have the shoals right in front of us. Be prepared.

  5. Are we ruled by Law; or whim and fiery emotion? As imperfect creatures living in a world created by many biases, prejudices, hatred and ideologies; it’s easy to become lost, confused and ineffective.

    Absent from our educational system has been a “How To Live Curriculum”. Unenlightened and blind experts have bred generations of empty, frightened and angry madness; which continues to infect the “peoples’ of the world” with its toxicity.

    The resultant “egocentric idiocy” birthed by such disease, has manifested itself throughout our society. Few are spared from the influences of such insidious lunacy and delusion.

    I fell for it lock stock and barrel. As a young man, because of a series of horrific experiences, I was shaken free form the dogma and articles of faith that I had been indoctrinated with. The “Spell” had been broken. I realized that all the golden ideologies and rules presented to me; didn’t glitter.

    Through my pain, I was catapulted into another dimension, where I intuitively became aware of another reality.

    The scientific principles that lifted me out of the darkness, are available for all. Yet, our educational paradigms refuse to include them in the instructional programming of our students and society at large.

    Insanity has been described as doing the same thing over and over; while expecting a different result.

  6. My heart is wrenched by the deported Haitian man’s ordeal.

    I know what Donald Trump’s position probably is, but I wonder what are ICE and Sheriff Ramsay’s stances on white East Europeans, especially white Eastern European women, who are not US citizens?

    I wonder how Pritam Singh (Key West hotel developer mogul) and Mark Rossi (former Key West City Commissioner who owns strip joints in Key West) might be affected by ICE and Sheriff Ramsay treating white East Europeans like they treat blacks and browns?

    Should Pritam’s and Rossi’s illegals be deported? Shouldn’t all illegals be deported?
    I see that as entirely different from immigration.

    Personally, I agree with Trump about cracking down on immigration. I agree because of America’s war with Islam, or, if you wish, Islam’s war with America, which America and it’s allies started, is how I see it.

    America has heaps of internal problems, which the run up to Trump being elected laid raw and naked. America has a war addiction, too. Well, it’s big business, war, so it’s okay.

    Anyway, there really is no way to reliably flesh out sleeper jihadists. France and the rest of Europe, Great Britain, Africa, Middle Eastern, India, Indonesia and, yes, America, have proven that.

    Just watch what’s going on in France.

    I imagine Russia is terrified of Islam, given how many Islamic-dominated countries line the southern border of Russia. No ocean separates Russia from those countries.
    I no longer see it as America’s role to be a sanctuary for people living in dangerous or impoverished conditions elsewhere. Not because I worry about my own safety, hell, I’d be happy to check out of here today. However, I have children and grand children, who have rough times to look forward to even without the threat of being blown up in a shopping mall, or at a parade. So, yeah, I think it’s time for America to tighten it’s immigration a lot. I’d start with Saudi Arabians and branch out from there, since that’s where radical Islam gets lots of its funding.

    In America, I’m pretty sure state and federal prisons are incubators for radical jihadists. President Trump needs to deal with that as well. Perhaps he starts by issuing edicts for federal law enforcement officers to stop arresting blacks and browns for offenses whites don’t tend to get arrested for; and he lobbies federal courts to stop putting so many browns and blacks in prison.

    In fact, as a first step of leadership, Trump ends America at war and brings the troops home to defend Americans from Americans and foreign terrorists in the upcoming time of troubles.

    Then, Trump turns himself into the US Attorney general, for consorting with the enemy, Russia, and for stealing an awful lot of American poor working stiffs’ hard-earned money, when he welched on his subcontractors.

  7. What will be the long term effect in Key West if all of the so called illegals get deported ? Just what percentage of workers does this come to ? Just maybe this will force wages to go up and rents to go down. We let them come to work, pay taxes and then send them away. Even if illegal and forced to leave this was a very non humane way to handle it. Trump did not exactly say that even the non criminal ones could stay. Seems like what this is just a cheap way to deport by letting them show up. So now what , they don’t renew then get arrested and picked up.

    • There is a constitutional issue at play. On the face of things it is not known whether or not this woman is an “illegal alien”. She might be, then again, she might not be. The detainer form used by Border Patrol states that they wanted her held because they had “initiated” an “investigation” as to whether she is “subject to removal from the United States.” The request makes no probable cause determination and there is no requirement for a judicial warrant for her continued incarceration. These detainer requests have long been controversial. In fact, they have been declared unconstitutional in their various forms. The federal government just a few days ago [on March 24th] again changed their guidance on detainer requests and changed the content of their detainer forms – they now require a probable cause determination by the agents asking for a detainer HOLD and they made that determination a part of the form. Civil rights attorneys are still arguing that the constitution is being violated because there must be judicial oversight. This concept is recognized in other areas of criminal justice where the officer must find “probable cause,” the suspect is put in jail but the suspect must be sent to a Judge [usually within 24 hours] and the Judge must sanction the probable cause determination or the suspect must be set free. That is not happening here. She paid bond and would have normally been released from jail and she would have gone to trial [or came to a plea agreement] on the driving without license charge. You know – the normal flow of justice. Here, she was kept in jail after paying her bond for no other reason than because a Border Patrol agent had asked the Sheriff to do so. The Sheriff’s spokesperson had told us that the woman would be released upon payment of bond but that BP would be told that the suspect’s bond had been paid [ie of her imminent release]. We published the Sheriff spokesperson’s explanation about what would happen when the family paid the bond in full and in quotes. When we became aware that the jail had instead refused to release her – because of the BP detainer, we asked the Sheriff’s spokesperson for further clarification. She refuses to respond to us.

  8. …. Next time you get pulled over by the Gestapo …. dont be surprised if instead of this Police/Ice/ Military Officer saying : ” License & Registration ” He instead says… ” You Have Your Papers, Comrade?”