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He Was About To Pick Up His Newborn Son After Surgery When He Was Arrested By ICE

| June 4, 2017

oscar millan ice

Oscar Millan, right, was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers as he was about to pick up his newborn son, Oscar Matias, from surgery. If deported, he will also leave behind an older son, Angel. Both are United States citizens. (Evanice Escuerdo).

Early last Monday morning, Oscar Millan’s longtime partner called him from a Boston hospital, weepy with relief.

Their son, Oscar Matias, had been born two weeks earlier with a serious condition that prevented food from traveling from his stomach to his small intestine. But that morning, he’d undergone a successful surgery to repair it, and a second was scheduled for early June. Millan told his partner, Evanice Escudero, that he’d be by to pick them up in a couple of hours, after checking in on a landscaping job he had to do that day.

But Millan, a 37-year-old undocumented Mexican immigrant, never made it to the hospital.

As he drove to the job site, he was picked up by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, who were looking for him near his home in Framingham, Massachusetts, about 20 miles outside of Boston. In 2008, an immigration judge had ordered Millan deported after a failed asylum claim, but Millan had stayed in the country with his family until he recently pleaded guilty to driving under the influence. An ICE spokesman said Millan’s arrest was prompted by both the deportation order and the conviction.

At the hospital, Escudero began to panic. “I was calling him over and over again but he wasn’t picking up and I didn’t know why,” Escudero said in an interview in Spanish. “I didn’t know what was going on until Oscar’s mother came to pick me up at around 11 or noon.”

After the arrest, ICE agents had gone to Millan and Escudero’s house and explained to his mother what had happened.

The move to detain Millan is a sign that the Trump administration is delivering on its promise to strictly follow longstanding immigration laws to maximize its ability to deport people living unlawfully in the United States.

After years of aggressive enforcement, the Obama administration had instructed immigration officials in 2014 to exercise more discretion in who they targeted. ICE agents were told to consider the length of time immigrants had lived in the country, their family or community ties and whether they had a young child or a seriously ill relative before seeking their deportation. The Trump administration explicitly rescinded those guidelines in February. Instead, it told immigration officers to enforce the law “to the greatest extent practicable.”

“He has to be with his family right now,” said Matthew Cameron, a Boston lawyer who’s representing Millan. “But you need to understand that there is no legal path, there never has been a legal path for that. It’s a fairly typical story now in Trump’s deportation system.”

An ICE spokesman said Millan would “remain in ICE custody pending his removal from the United States.”

It’s hard to say whether Millan’s case is a direct result of Trump’s aggressive immigration policies. Even without the DUI, a February memo from the Department of Homeland Security said immigration agents should prioritize the deportation of those who had outstanding orders to be removed.

During the first 100 days of the administration, ICE officers arrested 38 percent more immigrants than during the same period in 2016, about 410 individuals a day. The administration touted the numbers as a victory, but the narrow comparison obscures the evolution of the Obama administration on immigration enforcement. In fact, during the majority of his administration, Obama deported far more people each day than Trump has so far.

In the press release announcing the increase in arrests, ICE’s acting director Thomas Homan said the agency would no longer sit on deportation orders — like the one Millan had for years — before enforcing them.

“We are a nation of laws, and ignoring orders issued by federal judges undermines our constitutional government,” Homan said.

Millan was arrested in January 2016 by a Framingham police officer for driving under the influence. At the time, a breathalyzer test said he had a blood-alcohol concentration almost twice the Massachusetts legal limit. The police report made no mention of his immigration status, other than mentioning that Millan had no valid driver’s license, and had instead showed a Mexican one.

“After his conviction, he would have gone up the pecking order even under Obama,” said Dan Kesselbrenner, executive director of the National Immigration Project, an advocacy organization based in Boston. “And there is no real pecking order under the Trump administration. Everyone is a priority.”

Steven Carl, who led the Framingham Police Department until 2013, said that during his time there the presence of ICE agents was rare, perhaps one or two days every six months. The town is 13 percent Hispanic, according to the 2010 census, and has a particularly large Brazilian population.

“It seems odd just because he has a DUI that they would pick him up,” Carl said. “I’d think ICE would have higher priorities than that.”

The Framingham Police Department, which has a policy of not actively cooperating with ICE, did not respond to requests for comment.

After his arrest on May 22, Millan was held in a Boston detention center but was recently sent to a larger facility in Louisiana. Cameron, his lawyer, has filed an emergency request to stay his deportation — a last recourse — asking ICE to “allow him to remain with his family during this critical time in his newborn son’s life.” He said he has yet to receive a response, but the requirements of the administrative appeal are notoriously hard to decipher.

Millan’s case echoes that of Andres Magana Ortiz, 43, a Mexican immigrant who lived in the U.S. for 28 years and was recently denied an emergency stay by ICE. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit said on Tuesday that it had no authority to prevent his deportation.

ICE had granted Magana Ortiz multiple emergency stays over the years but denied his latest two petitions, filed in March and April of this year. During the time he was allowed to stay in the country, Magana Ortiz had begun the process to become a U.S. citizen after marrying an American in 2015. He is also the father of three American children and while he had two old DUI convictions, they had not prevented him from receiving the emergency stays in the past.

Two 9th Circuit judges said on Tuesday that they had no authority to grant Magana Ortiz an emergency stay. But one, Judge Stephen Reinhardt, a liberal appointee, used his concurring opinion to chastise the Trump administration.

“The government forces us to participate in ripping apart a family,” Reinhardt wrote. “The government’s decision to remove Magana Ortiz shows that even the ‘good hombres’ are not safe.”

Since arriving in Louisiana this week, Escudero said she had spoken with Millan once.

“He’s desperate,” Escudero said. “Since he arrived, they’ve already sent one group to Honduras. They are sending people back so quickly.”

–Marcelo Rochabrun, ProPublica


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45 Responses for “He Was About To Pick Up His Newborn Son After Surgery When He Was Arrested By ICE”

  1. Benjamin Bartlett says:

    Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,
    Send these, the homeless, tempest tost to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door.


  2. Pcbest says:

    Millan, a 37-year-old undocumented Mexican immigrant. Says it all. Do it the legal way like my family did or face deportation .

  3. Sw says:

    Offer stands when the individuals go thru the proprr channels.
    God Bless America

  4. Truth says:

    This man is not an undocumented alien, he is an illegal alien. He violated an order by a Judge to leave the Country and he refused. He then was arrested and plead guilty to a second crime. Sorry but if I as an American citizen violated a Judge’s order, then got arrested I would be held accountable for both of these actions. It is so nice to have a President that believes in law & order.

  5. Instigator says:

    Finally, someone enforcing the laws already on the books. Why have a law if you do not enforce it?

  6. D Hellmuth says:

    May they all come…but legally

  7. Anonymous says:

    he didnt come through ellis island–so therefor he is an illegal alien…..

    see ya later sucka!

  8. Anonymous says:

    undocumented Mexican immigrant=illegal alien

  9. Linda says:

    There has to be a better way than this to deal with the problem. This is cruelty. Sometime watch “Sophie’s Choice” and maybe some of you enforcers might find some place in your heart that helps your brain think with feelings, and not just rules. Thank goodness not all of Nazi Germany’s citizens were law abiding, and ignored laws that lacked humanity. Separating families that have been here for decades – disgusting. In the law, there are usually statutes of limitations which after they pass, do not allow a suit. Why not this?
    There is also a doctrine of laches. It means “out of time” and refers to sitting on a claim you might have, but not acting. “The doctrine of laches is based on the maxim that “equity aids the vigilant and not those who slumber on their rights.” (Black’s Law Dictionary).”

  10. Traveling Rep says:

    I sure am saddened to hear that, because of his negligence in entering this country ILLEGALLY, he will not be able to be at his family’s side when they need him most. Godspeed to him getting back into this country through proper LEGAL immigration channels, so that he can pick up where he left off – after he BROKE THE LAW!!!

  11. Gkimp says:

    And the point is? Do thing legally?

  12. Mike T says:

    But Millan, a 37-year-old undocumented Mexican immigrant-Go back!

  13. Instigator says:

    Sorry, this is why we voted. End of the line is WAAAAAAAAY down there. No cutting

  14. FactIs... says:

    Here illegally. YEARS to rectify and make right. It’s not a matter of IF, but WHEN, one will get caught. In this case, caught AGAIN. Now post a story that is supposed to play on an emotional issue and give him pardon? Im sorry, but this is his doing.
    MANY desire our great nation’s opportunities and come here doing it the right way. For those that did, I can’t imagine how it feels to know so many are NOT learning and standing to take the oath of our nation.
    If it’s true love for this

  15. FactIs... says:

    Here illegally. YEARS to rectify and make right. It’s not a matter of IF, but WHEN, one will get caught. In this case, caught AGAIN. Now post a story that is supposed to play on an emotional issue and give him pardon? Im sorry, but this is his doing.
    MANY desire our great nation’s opportunities and come here doing it the right way. For those that did, I can’t imagine how it feels to know so many are NOT learning and standing to take the oath of our nation.

  16. wishful thinking says:

    ILLEGALS are not only undocumented they are criminals. My husband and I did things the right way when we married almost 30 years ago and he wanted to become a LEGAL AMERICAN resident. To save $ legal fees we waited on line -o v e r n i g h t – yep overnight at Miami Ins because at 8am they ‘let in’ the first 100 on line ( who apply themselves without an attorney. We brought 2 chairs- snacks – all our ‘necessary papers’ – aside from marriage certificate – my birth certificate, passport, deed to my home, voters registration, electric, phone and water bills and my hubby his birth certificate, aircraft license, passport and YEP at 4PM ( after more than a 20 hour patient wait my hubby walked out with full permission to get a LEGAL Social security card and start working…. He has now been a proud US citizen who has voted in every election ( also LEGALLY) and we joke how we almost never made it as one of the ‘first 100’ to get in the building if we hadn’t paid $50 to a ‘squatter’ who gets on line at about 5PM the day before to insure his ‘pay for the day’… another trip was required before he got his ‘permanent residency’ .
    Then a few years later INS lost his citizenship application . It was (then) Florida Gov Bob Graham’s staff who in days found it on the west coast.( Hubby was frantic he would not get his citizenship and be able to register to vote in time in the 2000 presidential election for Al Gore .

    Ironically, He -we got to thank Bob Graham in person the famous night at Miami Democratic Headquarters that Gore won the election but wait – then lost… We did it the right way – all the way and it really p………es me off to see the bleeding hearts who have more respect for law breakers than those who respect and abide by the law.
    His family is free to go him to Mexico so what’s the big deal.

    I have no mercy for people who break the immigration laws of my country and neither does my proud legal US citizen husband. Do it the right way or expect the highway….

  17. sad says:

    But under obama everyone got a pass laws are laws wake up sheeple due to laws not being enforced for 8 yrs we as a nation allow 90 percent of the herion to continue to be exported out of afghanistan courtesy of cia we export 90 percent of porn to the world etc

  18. Fredrick says:

    ” follow longstanding immigration laws”…… this is all we want any done. Even though the liberals will continue to call the other side, “anti agreement, xenophobic, Muslim haters… ” we are not.. If you wish to come live here and be an American we will welcome you with open arms, just get in line with everyone else and do it legally.

  19. Concerned Citizen says:

    I’m all for someone being here legally and documented. I have no problem with you being from Mexico, The Middle East or Asia. ( or Anywhere Else For That Matter)

    Where my problem lies is when you enter the country illegally and then proceed to commit illegal acts like DUI and not once but multiple times. I’m sorry but DUI is a criminal offense and it wasn’t a one time thing. You choose to drink and drive !!

    He then chose to disregard a Federal Judge’s order and go about his merry way. Family crisis or not if you keep breaking the laws then the justice system will catch up with you.

    If I as an American citizen have to maintain ID and whatever other proof the government requires as well as abide by laws then anyone else who lives here should have to as well. And that includes paying taxes as well.

  20. RayD says:

    Pyloric Stenosis! Our son had that and ended up in the ER and inpatient to surgically correct. He’s fine now! Best of luck with the baby in the story. Sad that the dad was here illegally. He needs to get that straightened out for the sake of his family. Its his responsibility.

  21. Kc says:

    We are not anti immigrant.
    We are anti ILLEGAL immigrant.

  22. BlueJammers says:

    A law is a law. If American citizens want to change a law we have the right to do so by contacting our elected officials and implement the voting process set forth by the founding fathers (and mothers).

    In any other direction, this endless ad nauseum dialogue will never find a home. And so it goes.

  23. blondee says:

    1 down; 11.3 million to go.

  24. Allistaire Chase Elliott says:

    The immigrant who was pick up after the surgery of their child, might have qualify for cancelation of removal. The equity calls for continune residency in the U.S for 10 years, good moral character, no aggravated felony or moral turpitude conviction. Extreme hardship to a U.S citizen or green card holder child, spouse or parent in the case of deportation. DUI is not grounds for deportation according to U.S. Supreme Court in Leocal v. Ashcroft. Immigration law is very complex. But today we’re have incompetent, inexperienced and unethical lawyers, advocates and lay persons preying on desperate immigrants.

  25. Tired of it says:

    Well, it looks like the consensus is that he is ILLEGAL and doesn’t belong here regardless of the situation. Come back the legal way and you will be welcomed.

  26. woody says:

    Illegal is illegal,stop making babies and get your green card.Who’s paying all the bills?tax payers?

  27. John Yankovich says:

    Once more a heart tugging story about illlegal alien.They come stay and use our public assistance programs then whine when their caught. Depending on who you check the estimate is between 320 to 350 Billiion dollars a year the the US citizens pay for public services for illegals. Get rid of them and concentrate on our own American citlizens!

  28. Veteran says:

    DUI, no drivers license, illegal alien. Three strikes you’re out, even though the last one would do it. The Lew is finally being enforced.

  29. Merrill Shapiro says:

    Do you really need a Rabbi to tell you this?

    Hospitality can be defined as “the quality or disposition of receiving and treating guests and strangers in a warm, friendly, generous way.” In the New Testament, the Greek word translated “hospitality” literally means “love of strangers.” Hospitality is a virtue that is both commanded and commended throughout Scripture. In the Old Testament, it was specifically commanded by God: “When an alien lives with you in your land, do not mistreat him. The alien living with you must be treated as one of your native-born. Love him as yourself, for you were aliens in Egypt” (Leviticus 19:33-34, emphasis added).

    During His public ministry, Jesus and His disciples depended entirely on the hospitality of others as they ministered from town to town (Matthew 10:9-10). Likewise, the early Christians also depended on and received hospitality from others (Acts 2:44-45; 28:7). In fact, travelers in ancient times depended heavily on the hospitality of strangers as traveling could be dangerous and there were very few inns, and poor Christians could not afford to stay at them, anyway. This generous provision to strangers also included opening one’s home for church services. Hospitality was indeed a highly regarded virtue in ancient times, especially for Christian leaders (Titus 1:8; 1 Timothy 3:2).

    The writer of Hebrews reminds us not to forget to “entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it” (Hebrews 13:2). Indeed, in the book of Genesis we read of Abraham’s humble and generous display of hospitality to three strangers. Wealthy and aged, Abraham could have called on one of his many servants to tend to the three unannounced visitors. Yet the hospitable and righteous Abraham generously gave them the best he had. And, as it turned out, he had entertained the Lord and two angels (Genesis 18:1-8).

    Christians are “God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10). As followers of Christ, we emulate His love and compassion when we show hospitality, not only to fellow Christians, but even more so to strangers and the less fortunate. In fact, we honor God when we are kind to the needy (Proverbs 14:31; 19:17). As Jesus said, “When you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed” (Luke 14:13). Christ also taught us the second greatest commandment, to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39), and the Parable of the Good Samaritan teaches us that “neighbor” has nothing to do with geography, citizenship, or race. Wherever and whenever people need us, there we can be neighbors and, like Christ, show mercy. This is the essence of hospitality.

    In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus discusses the hospitable behavior of those who will inherit the kingdom: “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me” (Matthew 25:34-36). In these days we often don’t think much about entertaining strangers, but hospitality is still an important part of Christian ministry (Romans 12:13; 1 Peter 4:9). By serving others we serve Christ (Matthew 25:40) and we promote the spread of God’s truth (3 John 5-8).

  30. Dave S. says:

    We need a president like this one to properly handle the immigration process!!

  31. B Stone says:

    I agree with the majority of commenters who consider illegal immigrants to be lawbreakers. It is a shame that their family suffers, but they are responsible for their illegal actions. I consider myself blessed that my grandfather followed the law, went through Elle’s Island and did the work required to become a LEGAL US citizen. It is too bad when others try to shortcut. They hurt themselves and their families. This should be a lesson for those considering illegally entering in the US. Don’t do it! You have too much to lose if you stay in the US illegally.

  32. Jolene dehart says:

    Really sad all you UnAmerican haters who do not care about what this country was founded in and what it stands for. Shameful. Unless you are a Native American (indian) EVERY ONE OF US CAME HERE AS A RESULT OF IMMIGRATION, REGUGEE, ETC. BEFORE there were any LAWS. I’M DISGUSTED AT THE HOLIER THAN THOU ATTITUDES. Read the motto on the statue of liberty. That’s what we stand for.

  33. Sherry says:

    AGAIN. . . get yourselves “educated”. . . do you really not understand that this father had NO WAY of making himself a legal immigrant???? Although President Obama tried to get the “Republican” congress to approve a “PATH” to “LEGAL” status for those living here illegally. . . YOUR congress would not even consider any such possibility. The “PATH” even included such things as paying back taxes and a long waiting period.

    Also are you really so “stupid” that you do not know that the Ellis Island immigration station closed in 1954!!! Even those that came through Ellis Island were NOT really vetted. . . they often had no birth certificate, nothing to officially prove who they were. They spent, on the average 2 minutes with an inspector. The only ones turned away where those who were obviously sick with a contagious disease.

    YOU are using the illusion of Legal vs Illegal immigration to exercise your racial bias and hatred. We see through your complete BS!

  34. Brian says:

    When did enforcing the law become so controversial?

  35. Patriot says:

    Why have laws on the books if we won’t enforce them? Bottomline he came here illegally hence avoiding our tax statement. And process of responsibility of being a citizen yet wants the tremendous benefit of being one. He could have do e it the right way, he chose not to. cya!!

  36. Mark101 says:

    “”” In 2008, an immigration judge had ordered Millan deported after a failed asylum claim, but Millan had stayed in the country with his family until he recently pleaded guilty to driving under the influence.” That’s is under the Obama administration. Illegal is illegal,correct.

  37. FLnavtive says:

    He’s had all this time to become a citizen. Why didn’t he???? Now we’re to feel pity for him? NO … He knew the consequences. Many people come here for a better life & opportunities, but they become U.S. citizens!. He could have become a citizen, now he’s made a big mess for his family.

  38. Jaded Veteran says:

    Such a sad story and it DOES tug at ones heartstrings. I guess now I am supposed to be for leaving the border open to everyone (or else I am a racist, right?). Here is the deal. There is a LEGAL way, no, there are many ways to legally immigrate to this country. I have naturalized American Citizens in my PERSONAL household, they came here legally and, they make GREAT AMERICANS. They were investigated and vetted and sponsored (this was not easy nor cheap, but it was RIGHT). Being in favor of protecting our borders, in the rule of law, is an act of love for ones country – count me in on that. I wish these people the best – but Mr Millan had a duty to follow the law – he seems to make a habit of ignoring that duty.

  39. Anna says:

    This is sad. Your intentions aren’t really about developing compassion for people like Oscar Millan but to argue that liberals are more “right” then the conservatives. It’s childish. Posting an article like this does nothing but divide.

    There is free speech and then there is right speech (according to Theravada Buddhism). Right speech involves seeings things as they are without conditions, concepts, ideas, etc. It’s about being objective. This man did the wrong thing risking the livelihood of his family by not going through the proper immigration process to become an American citizen. It’s that simple, but you want to complicate reality.

  40. Jolene dehart says:

    Were all US white folk that came here from Europe here LEGALLY back in the day when we murdered native Indians and stole their land?

  41. Jolene dehart says:

    Wishful thinking, I’m wishful that haters like I would leave this country. I guess it was ok when all OUR ancestors came here B4 there was a LAW, and stole this land from the indigenous people

  42. Jolene dehart says:

    SW, America belongs to the indigenous natives that were here before WE came here

  43. Anonymus says:

    The law is the law. If you’re here illegally & commit a crime, you are deported. My husband came here from Central America & immediately applied for his green card & work visa in hopes that one day he would become a U.S. citizen. After all the trips to INS, paperwork & having to travel back to his Country of origin 2 times, he finally became a U.S. citizen. It may have taken a few years, but it happened. That’s what this guy needs to do. Prayers for his family, especially his son who just had surgery

  44. Sherry says:

    Not EVERY law reflects the “will of the people”. Take a read about how Republicans continuously block a path to legal status:

    Now look at the polls showing a majority of citizens think there should be a path:

  45. MannyHM says:

    Please use a little bit of compassion and common sense on dealing with this issue. If this guy had been here contribution his labor and taxes without committing any crime. Why not allow him to stay ? We should be able to differentiate the good from the bad.

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