4-Year-Old Girl Deported in Immigration Snafu


A 4-year-old Long Island girl whose parents are illegal immigrants was deported to Guatemala in an immigration snafu.

The family says Emily Samantha Ruiz was deported after her grandfather was detained by authorities when their flight was diverted to Washington following a visit to Guatemala.

Emily's a U.S. citizen; her parents are illegal immigrants living in Brentwood.

Family attorney David Sperling says Emily's grandfather had a work visa but was taken into custody when officials noticed he had entered illegally in the 1990s.

"It's an outrage that Customs and Border Protection didn't do anything to reunite her with her parents ... She is a U.S. citizen and she has every right to come to the U.S.," he told the Daily News.

Authorities told the family Emily could be held at a juvenile center in Virginia or return to Guatemala. The two went back.

Customs and Border Protection officials confirmed Emily was sent back to Guatemala but declined further comment.

Emily's parents risk being detained if they go get her. Sperling plans to pick her up.

Democratic Rep. Steve Israel is asking Homeland Security to review the case, the News said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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