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Teen murdered in Mexico weeks after deportation from US

June 13, 2018  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Teen murdered in Mexico weeks after deportation from US

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Iowa teen Manuel Antonio Cano-Pacheco murdered in Mexico weeks after deportation from the U.S.

A teen who resided in Iowa was killed in Mexico three weeks after immigration officials deported him to the country he left as when he was 3-years-old.

Manuel Antonio Cano-Pacheco, 19 — among the immigrants referred to as “Dreamers” who were illegally brought into the United States as children — was scheduled to graduate high school in Des Moines this month, but was pulled over for speeding in the fall, and was deported in April.

Soon after he arrived in the violent, gang-stricken region of Zacatecas — where he didn’t know anyone — his throat was slit, ABC News reported.

“He was in the wrong place at the wrong time,” his friend, 20-year-old Juan Verduzco, said.

Previously, Cano-Pacheco had qualified for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, an Obama-era policy that barred some undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as kids from being deported.

The teen was popular at Des Moines Central Campus High, worked a floor installations job, and had a passion for cars, which git him a scholarship at a school in Chicago.

Antonio Cano Pacheco, 19, was killed in Mexico mere weeks he was deported back by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

However, his life was turned upside down after his father went to prison on drug conviction three years ago.

“Things were going downhill. I didn’t know what to do,” Verduzco said — adding that his friend turned to alcohol.

“I think most of this is because of his dad,” Verduzco continued. “That’s when his college stuff, his dreams went down the drain.”

An immigration judge later ended his DACA status because of two misdemeanor offenses, including a drug charge and DWI, according to ICE.

After he was stopped for speeding, he was brought by deportation officers to Mexico in a “voluntary” process that does not carry the punishments of formal deportation, and would permit him to come back legally with a visa.

“Based on his convictions, his DACA status was terminated making him amenable to deportation,” ICE explained. “[He] was granted voluntary departure, ‘under safeguards,’ by an immigration judge.”

Soon after he arrived in the Mexican state of Zacatecas, Cano-Pacheco went out to get something to eat with his cousin’s friend who probably knew the murders, Verduzco stated. Both men were murdered.

Cano-Pacheco’s life was celebrated at Trinity Las Americas church in Des Moines on June 3rd. However, Verduzco is heartbroken by the loss of his pal.

“I don’t believe it,” Verduzco said. “I don’t understand.”

In recent years, Zacatecas has become plagued with drug and cartel-related violence. Last year, the remains of 14 people were found in a mass grave in the same area.

Violence in Mexico is skyrocketing, with 12,238 reported murders in the first five months of 2017 — just slightly lower than the United States’ total annual homicide rate of 17,250 the year prior.

Cano-Pacheco’s story emerged the same week that a pizza delivery driver, Pablo Villavicencio — an undocumented immigrant from Ecuador — was detained by ICE for delivering pasta to the Fort Hamilton Army base in Brooklyn, New York.

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