Why This Woman Was Just Deported After Showing up for a Routine Immigration Meeting

February 9th 2017

Sarah Gray

"Not one more."

This is what the crowd outside the Federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office in Phoenix, Arizona, chanted in a Facebook Live video posted Wednesday by Francisca Porchas. The protesters were rallying for Guadalupe "Lupita" García de Rayos, who showed up to ICE for a routine check-in with immigration officers and had been showing up for these meetings to review her case for eight years, according to the New York Times.

This time the 36-year-old was detained. And according to MSNBC contributor María Teresa Kumar, Garcia de Royas was deported.

García de Rayos now faces deportation, according to Ray Ybarra Maldonado, her attorney. President Donald Trump, who campaigned on stringent immigration laws, signed an executive order Jan. 25, which broadened the prioritization for deportation of undocumented immigrants to include any criminal offense. 

“Ms. García de Rayos is currently being detained by ICE based on a removal order issued by the Department of Justice's Executive Office for Immigration Review which became final in May 2013,” the agency said in statement, according to the Los Angeles Times

Protesters waited late into the night to try to block ICE vans from leaving; seven were arrested, according to the local station CBS 5

Rayos was brought to the United States from the Mexican state Guanajuato when she was 14 years old. She's married to another undocumented immigrant and has two teenage children, who were born in the United States.

In 2008, García de Rayos was arrested during a raid while working in Mesa, Arizona, at Golfland Sunsplash, and she was later charged with felony identity theft for using a fake Social Security number in order to gain employment. The raid was ordered by Joe Arpaio, the controversial former sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona.

In 2013, a judge issued a deportation order for García de Rayos, but her case was "on hold," the New York Times reported. Under the Obama administration, her case wasn't considered a priority. A 2014 Homeland Security memorandum placed deportation priority on "threats to national security, border security, and public safety" followed by "misdemeanants and new immigration violators," with the lowest priority given to "other immigration violations."

However, Trump's executive order states that it will prioritize the removal of those living in the country illegally who fall under the following categories:

(a)  Have been convicted of any criminal offense;

(b)  Have been charged with any criminal offense, where such charge has not been resolved; 

(c)  Have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense;

(d)  Have engaged in fraud or willful misrepresentation in connection with any official matter or application before a governmental agency; 

(e)  Have abused any program related to receipt of public benefits;

(f)  Are subject to a final order of removal, but who have not complied with their legal obligation to depart the United States; or

(g)  In the judgment of an immigration officer, otherwise pose a risk to public safety or national security. 

"It's extremely disappointing to walk in with a beautiful loving and caring human being like Guadalupe and not be able to walk out with her," said Ybarra Maldonado to ABC15. "She is stronger than I am, when she heard she was going to be taken in, she took a deep breath asked what the next step that would happen and she went into custody."