SEATTLE (AP) - A man who was brought to the U.S. illegally as a child but was protected from deportation by the Obama administration has been taken into custody in the Seattle area in what could be the first case of its kind in the country.
Northwest Immigrants Rights Project Legal Director Matt Adams told The Associated Press Tuesday that 23-year-old Daniel Ramirez Medina was arrested Friday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents. Adams says he believes the young man was apprehended by mistake.
Adams says agents were at the Seattle home to arrest the man's father and that they took both men into custody. Ramirez Medina has a work permit under Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. He's being held in Tacoma.
Adams says the man is the first person he knows of with DACA status who has been detained.
Rose Richeson, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesperson, issued the following statement:
“Mr. Ramirez—a self-admitted gang member—was encountered at a residence in Des Moines, Washington, during an operation targeting a prior-deported felon. He was arrested Feb. 10 by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and transferred to the Northwest Detention Center to await the outcome of removal proceedings before an immigration judge with the Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review.
ICE officers took Mr. Ramirez into custody based on his admitted gang affiliation and risk to public safety.”