Unlucky Elderly Cuban Couple Face Deportation

May 11, 2017 |

US denies their political asylum request

By Cafe Fuerte

El matrimonio Caraballo-González.

HAVANA TIMES — A Cuban couple, who were the first victims of the end of the preferential “wet foot/dry foot” policy after arriving at Miami International Airport in January, will finally be deported back to the island.

In a 12-page verdict, an immigration judge refused 67 year old Aquilino Caraballo’s request for asylum, who had a hearing to put his case forward on March 10th.

His wife, 64 year old Georgina Hernandez, is still waiting for her hearing, however, immigration lawyer Willy Allen, who is representing the couple, has said that he won’t ask for it to be suspended, as the arguments were the same for the both of them and the precedent of the judge’s verdict weighs quite heavy against them.

Factors against them

“I think there were several factors in this case, such as the fact that both of them had traveled outside of Cuba and had visited their daughter in the US a month before they had decided to return to stay definitively, that really tipped the scales against them,” explained Allen.

Aquilino is expected to be deported in the next few days, which won’t be at the same time that the U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement Office (ICE) decide to let his wife go back.

The negative ruling sets a strong precedent for Cuban asylum cases after Barack Obama turned the tables with this immigration policy, which is being upheld by Donald Trump’s administration.

A day too late

Aquilino and Georgina, residents of Batabano, in the south of Havana, arrived at Miami International Airport on January 13th with the aim to seek political asylum and thereby definitively reunite themselves with their children. This came a day after Washington announced its new immigration law with regard to Cuban immigrants.

The couple’s two children have been living in the US for years and are US citizens.

The couple has already been detained for over 120 days. Georgina is being held at a detention center in Pompano Beach, and 67 year old Aquilino is at the Krome center.

Both of them had traveled with visitors visas but once they had landed, they requested political asylum.  They were immediately arrested as they hadn’t realized that the special protection law for Cuban immigrants had changed so drastically 24 hours beforehand.

The Caraballo-Gonzalez couple made a living in agriculture in Cuba, thanks to a small plot their family had.

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  • Donald Thureau

    The US immigration authorities and judge lost their brains somewhere. If this couple had no other extenuating circumstances (i.e., criminal records), they should have been allowed to stay in the US since their children were already US citizens and have been living in the US for years. They need a new immigration lawyer!

    • Carlyle MacDuff

      Well, there is one who writes on these pages – Dan. Maybe he could intervene as he writes with approval of the Castro regime.

      • Dan

        Carlyle, my opinion of Fidel has absolutely nothing to do with the cold, hard, black letter law of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which is immensely more complicated and rigid than most people think. I’d like to elaborate on why these people are out of luck, but ironically, at the moment I’m too busy working on keeping a Cuban guy, on welfare, with highlighted hair, who’s been arrested for shoplifting earrings from Walmart, from being deported. Cuidate.

        • Moses Patterson

          Stealing earrings from Walmart? Send that guy back to Cuba!

          • Salim Jessa

            Moses…..Do u know that items like earrings have a big markup?Its never right to steal but keep in mind that Wallmarts r the richest in the world & they r living in the land stolen from the Indians.

          • Moses Patterson

            Stealing is stealing.

          • Carlyle MacDuff

            The difficulty Moses frequently illustrated in these pages is that of a dual morality. You and I for example knowing the reality, understand why it is that a high percentage of Cubans pilfer from their employer (the state or GAESA subsidiaries) in order to feed their children and to exist. Note I do not approve, but I understand because the Castro family regime has succeeded in placing so many of the citizens of Cuba in penury.
            No doubt the people of Venezuela are similarly endeavoring to survive by
            also pilfering – ie: stealing in a legal sense.
            The question of degree and motivation does have some relevance. Many of the original white occupants of Australia arrived there as convicts who had been sentenced for 7 or more years for crimes which included the stealing of a handkerchief.

          • Moses Patterson

            Believe me I understand. A young black man can have his life nearly ruined over a few marijuana joints. But stealing earrings from Walmart? Doesn’t sound like he was stealing out of necessity or desperation.

        • Carlyle MacDuff

          Dan, thanks for your civil response. I don’t imagine for a moment that the work of an immigration lawyer is easy. For your interest, we applied to the Canadian Embassy in Havana for a TRV for my wife unsuccessfully five times. We then applied to the UK Embassy for a visa, which was granted. Having visited the UK, the Canadian Embassy eventually granted a TRV.
          I cannot speak of US law, but can imagine the complications. However, I can state factually that in the 1991 NAFTA negotiations, Carla Hills the chief negotiator for the Republican President Bush, refused to take part until both Canada and Mexico agreed not to raise the subject of mobility of employment.
          Eventually NAFTA was agreed and signed by President Bill Clinton following his defeat of Bush, but it was a Republican run negotiation.
          I can also relate that a recommendation was made to the Canadian negotiator Michael Wilson, that there be some mobility of employment using green papers but not permitting change of nationality or permanent residence. The opinion that was given in support of that recommendation was that although the Trade Unions might oppose it, it would dissuade businesses from establishing production plants in MexIco. As I already wrote, that was quashed by Carla Hills.
          In consequence, I have watched the antics of Donald Trump(f) with a degree of interest as he blamed Clinton for “the worst trade deal in history” although it was concluded prior to signing by Bush.
          Good luck with trying to help the Cuban client!
          Having said that for your professional interest, we can revert to political stone throwing!

    • Moses Patterson

      It’s not that simple. Why should they be allowed to “jump the line”? Especially because other would-be immigrants have migrated legally

      • Donald Thureau

        Policies should be guidelines to follow, and there needs to be flexibility for extenuating circumstances. You all of people know that things are never black and white, and this is no exception, but I realize that the bureaucracy of government going “by the book” is unforgiving.

        • Moses Patterson

          With regards to immigration, I would imagine that everyone has “extenuating” circumstances. From what I have read in this article, this particular couple should be sent back to Cuba.

          • Dog

            their family is in the USA, this is an idiotic statement… maybe you need to expand you imagination

            nah i think he would be better off working on one of the chain gangs rebuilding the roads in Miami

            BTW is the Hillary/Obama payback the Cuban community gets for supporting the GOP. Oddly, enough Trump doesn’t give a damn to change it back. Will be interesting to see how that works out in the political voting.

          • Carlyle MacDuff

            Well ‘Dog’ if there were no regulations in the capitalist world about immigration, then a very high percentage of those living under socialism in other countries would immediately move to them. That isn’t even debatable.
            During the last three years the world has witnessed one third of the population of Syria suffering the al-Asad socialist dictatorship abandoning their homes and endeavoring to flee to capitalist countries. Under the al-Asad administration Syria has lost the societal structure it previously enjoyed.
            Society necessitates regulation and law, the significant question being whether those who make the regulations and laws are elected by the democratic process as in the capitalist countries whereby there is choice, or by dictatorship
            as demonstrated in the communist/socialist countries where there is no choice.
            Can you provide an example of people fleeing a capitalist country in order to live in a communist dictatorship like Cuba?
            Here in these pages we observe repeatedly, praise for the Castro ‘Socialismo’ dictatorship, but it comes from folks using the freedom of speech which they have in their capitalist countries.

          • Moses Patterson

            Come again? What does where their family lives have to do with their illegal immigration? Besides, “family”, especially in Cuba, means much more than children.

      • Dog

        yes they should. don’t be a knucklehead… some Americans are just getting dumber and dumber… some of ya’ll shouldn’t be allowed to vote…

        • Carlyle MacDuff

          In Cuba ‘Dog’ nobody is allowed to vote! The so-called vote is irrelevant as there is no choice – only members of the Communist Party of Cuba are candidates.
          Your attitude reflects the conceit that you are correct and that those who disagree are “dumber and dumber”.

        • Moses Patterson

          Oh, I get it. Taking away a person’s right to vote, is that your thing? No wonder you are pro-Castro.

  • C Ermle

    It’s time for everybody to go home now. The Trumpers are in power.