Published: Sun, June 10, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

NY Governor Asks for Federal Probe of Detained Pizza Man

NY Governor Asks for Federal Probe of Detained Pizza Man

New York's governor on Friday asked for a federal investigation into the conduct of immigration officials after an Ecuadorean pizza shop worker was detained while trying to make a delivery to an Army garrison in Brooklyn.

A lawyer for Pablo Villavicencio said he's seeking an immediate stay of removal on "humanitarian grounds" so he can pursue a pending application for a Green Card to remain in the United States as a permanent resident.

Jennifer Williams, Villavicencio's Legal Aid Society lawyer, said at a news conference Friday that she filed a motion to stop his removal and to allow Villavicencio to pursue legal residency through his wife, who is a US citizen.

Pablo Villavicencio was detained when he made a delivery to Fort Hamilton army base on Friday and was asked for a second form of ID. "I confirmed with her that New York State, working with our partners, has secured pro-bono legal counsel to represent Mr. Villavicencio".

He showed his New York City identification card to the guard as he had done several times before, but it wasn't enough this time, his wife says.

Earlier this week, Villavicencio spoke to KTLA sister station WPIX in NY from an ICE detention center in New Jersey.

His family said he could be deported as early as Monday. "Now, I'm alone with two kids".

An illegal immigrant pizza deliveryman could be spared deportation if he can show his American wife would suffer' extreme hardship' without him. This time, however, they rejected it.

Cuomo said on Thursday that he spoke by phone with Chica to express his "deep frustration with the federal government's assault on New York's immigrant families".

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Villavicencio would also need to have only crossed the border illegally once, as multiple crossings make it nearly impossible to get a spousal green card.

Villavicencio was granted voluntary departure by an immigration judge in March of 2010 but failed to leave the country by that July.

"Tell me how this is American".

Bay Ridge Councilman Justin Brannan and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams demanded Villavicencio's release during a press conferenced held with Chica on Wednesday.

"The enforcement mechanism that was applied in Pablo's case is inhumane, unjustifiable and should shock the conscience", she said.

Villavicencio, the father of two little girls who were born in the United States, came to the US a decade ago.

Military police enter the Fort Hamilton military base in Brooklyn, June 7, 2018, in New York City.

A GoFundMe has been set up for the family.

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