Kansas father fighting deportation now held in HawaiiFebruary 14, 2018 12:22am

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Kansas father and husband who is fighting efforts to deport him to Bangladesh was taken off a plane that was flying him back to his native country and is being held at a detention center in Hawaii, his attorneys said Tuesday.

Federal immigration officials put Syed Ahmed Jamal, 55, who has lived in Kansas for 30 years, on the plane Monday before an immigration panel granted a temporary stay in the case. He was taken off the flight when it stopped to refuel in Honolulu, said Rekha Sharma-Crawford, one of his attorneys.

Sharma-Crawford said Tuesday that immigration officials could send him back voluntarily, but if they don't, her firm will ask a federal judge to order his return.

"It is our hope that doesn't have to happen and they will now at this point return him back to his family but we'll have to just see what happens," she said.

Jamal and his supporters have been battling his deportation since Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested him Jan. 24 at his family's home in Lawrence, where he lives with his wife and three children, who are U.S. citizens.

Until getting on the plane Monday, Jamal was being held at a detention center in El Paso, Texas. A judge lifted a temporary stay Monday morning. Sharma-Crawford said his attorneys and family were not notified before he was put on the plane. When they found out, they immediately sought a new stay from the Board of Immigration Appeals in Virginia, which granted one later Monday while Jamal was flying to Bangladesh.

ICE spokesman Carl Rusnok confirmed Tuesday that Jamal was in the Honolulu center "pending disposition of his immigration case."

As of early Tuesday afternoon, Jamal had not spoken to his family.

Jamal's possible deportation had prompted a backlash, with a protest march in Lawrence and 94,000 people signing a petition supporting him.

Rep. Emauel Cleaver, a Democrat from Missouri whose office was flooded with calls about the case, took up Jamal's cause, even visiting him in El Paso over the weekend. On Tuesday, Cleaver's spokeswoman said he is still interested in proposing a private bill that would allow Jamal to stay in the U.S.

Rep. Lynn Jenkins, whose Kansas district includes Lawrence, said before the second stay was issued Monday that she supported Jamal's efforts to have his immigration case reopened.

"My heart aches for his wife and children," Jenkins said. "I cannot imagine what they are going through during this very difficult time."

Jamal has worked as an adjunct professor and researcher at Kansas City-area colleges. He entered the U.S. legally in 1987 to attend the University of Kansas but overstayed his visa while pursuing a doctorate. He was ordered deported in 2011 but had been allowed to stay in the U.S. and check in regularly with immigration authorities.

Sharma-Crawford said Jamal has a work permit that is valid until October 2018 and that he was trying to work within what she said was a complicated immigration system.

ICE officials have consistently declined to explain why they chose to enforce the order in late January.

--------

Heather Hollingsworth in Kansas City contributed to this report.

Page 1 of 1

More Stories Like This

In this Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018 photo, Amer Othman, 57, speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Amman, Jordan. Othman's life turned upside down in an instant: The Ohio entrepreneur who came to the United States 38 years ago and won praise for helping revive once-blighted downtown Youngstown, was arrested during what he thought was another check-in with immigration authorities. He was detained for two weeks and deported to his native Jordan. (AP Photo/Raad Adayleh)
Ohio businessman, deported after 38 years in US, vows return
Gun control advocates demonstrate at the Vermont Statehouse in Montpelier, Vt., on Tuesday Feb. 20, 2018. The demonstration followed comments by Republican Gov. Phil Scott who said he was open to discussion about gun control as part of a broader discussion of ways to reduce violence. Scott's comments came after Vermont police arrested a suspect who they say was preparing for a school shooting. Vermont has long been considered to have some of the most lax gun control laws in the country. (AP Photo/Wilson Ring)
After teenager's arrest, liberal Vermont ponders gun safety
NYC rape case prompts calls to close police sex loopholeThe case of two New York City police officers accused of raping an 18-year-old woman in their custody last year is spurring calls to close what some are calling a police sex loophole
Rhode Island Senate Minority Whip Nicholas Kettle, appears in Superior Court in Providence on Monday, Feb. 19, 2018. A grand jury indictment unsealed Monday accuses Kettle of extorting sex from a page in the Rhode Island Senate page program. Kettle, 27, of Coventry, pleaded not guilty and was released on $50,000 personal recognizance.  (Steve Szydlowski/Providence Journal via AP)
ACLU: Don't rush to expel lawmaker accused of sex extortion
Teen accused of threatening school shooting arrestedPolice have arrested a 13-year-old Missouri boy accused of threatening to shoot up a school with an AK-47 in a video posted on social media
12-year-old girl arrested after Indiana school threatsOfficials say a 12-year-old girl has been arrested after authorities say she made online threats toward students and staff at a school in western Indiana
AdChoices

Related Searches

Related Searches

AdChoices