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Deported woman was a US citizen

Travelers coming to the United States must satisfy immigration officials who are stationed at border crossings at airports, such as Miami International Airport, that they are legally entitled to enter the country. A U.S. citizen usually has an easy time passing through immigration checkpoints and into the country, but this was not the case for a woman whose citizenship was questioned by officials.

The 33-year-old, who was born in Texas, moved with her father to El Salvador approximately 30 years ago. In 1998, an immigration official questioned the authenticity of her U.S. passport when she attempted to visit relatives in New York. When officials refused to believe that she was who she claimed to be, she eventually gave them an affidavit identifying herself as her half-sister.

The INS confiscated her passport and deported her to El Salvador. Working with a U.S. embassy official in El Salvador, the woman was able to convince officials of her true identity and of her status as a citizen of the U.S. With a new passport in hand, she traveled to the U.S. three times before she was detained at the border crossing into the U.S. from Mexico in March 2013.

Working with an immigration law attorney in the U.S., the woman was eventually able to convince officials of her citizenship and has been issued a new passport. The focus of Immigration and Customs Enforcement is on identifying those people attempting to enter the country without holding proper legal status to do so can. This focus can clash with the rights of citizens and others seeking entry at border crossings.

Immigration law is complex and might be confusing for those who are attempting disputes regarding citizenship or naturalization. An attorney might be able to address the questions and concerns of someone facing deportation.

Source: New York Daily News, "Deported U.S. citizen finally gets passport back ", Erica Pearson , December 01, 2013

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