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ICE agents detain immigrant grandparents visiting Army relative

July 13, 2018  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
ICE agents detain immigrant grandparents visiting Army relative

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ICE agents detain immigrant grandparents visiting Army relative

New York City lawmakers Wednesday demanded the release of two immigrant grandparents in Brooklyn who were taken into custody by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents while attempting to visit their son-in-law at Fort Drum Army base on the Fourth of July.

“There should be a moral outrage of what’s happening in this country. We’re arresting seniors who wanted to visit their family on July 4th now?” Councilman Francisco Moya said at a news conference with immigrant advocacy group Make the Road.

According to CNN, Concepción Barrios, 49, and 59-year-old Margarito Silva, who are both illegals immigrants from Mexico who have resided in New York for over 20 years, traveled to the upstate base to celebrate the holiday with their pregnant daughter and their sergeant son-in-law.

They provided their city-issued IDNYC cards at the gate but were informed that they couldn’t be accepted — so they instead they presented their Mexican passports.

The guards then contacted Customs and Border Protection when they couldn’t locate a valid visa, a base spokesperson told Buzzfeed News.

The arrest took place almost a month after undocumented Ecuadoran pizza delivery man Pablo Villavicencio was taken into custody by immigration agents while he delivered food at Fort Hamilton base in Brooklyn.

One of the pair’s other daughters, Perla Silva, said both parents recently had surgery and need medical assistance

She said her brother-in-law, who is a sergeant in the 10th Mountain division, has been deployed to Afghanistan two times and is about to be sent again.

“What’s traumatic about this is that a son that is willing to give his life on the fields of war in Afghanistan is ripped from his family here in America, that is appalling and unacceptable,” Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams stated at the press conference.

The incident has placed new scrutiny on IDNYCs, which Mayor Bill de Blasio pushed heavily to illegal immigrants as an alternative ID. Villavicencio also attempted to show the Fort Hamilton guards one of the cards before he was arrested.

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