South Carolina residents may have heard of the popular D.C. guru bartender, J.P. Caceres, who has recently made headlines regarding his legal immigration issues. Immigration reform has been in the headlines of many media outlets, but Caceres' story highlights the struggles that many individuals are facing with immigration today.
Juan Caceres-Rojas has had a long journey in his desire to become a U.S. citizen. He is originally from Bolivia and has become a very popular expert in his field. In March of 2004, Caceres married an American and she filed a petition for an alien relative to verify that the couple was legally married. In conjunction, Caceres also applied for a green card. The marriage was validated a year later, but the green card had to wait as background checks needed to be performed in a more comprehensive and detailed manner.
Three years passed and the green card never arrived. Meanwhile, Caceres divorced his wife in September of 2007. When Caceres informed immigration officials about the divorce, his petition for a green card was revoked and he was informed that deportation proceedings would begin. Caceres was recently granted a three months to remain in the U.S. to face criminal charges. If Caceres is deported, he will have to wait 10 years to return to the country.
When dealing with immigration issues, extended delays and backlogs of background checks, as in Caceres' case, are not uncommon. If one is faced with deportation proceedings, they have a right to a defense prior to their removal from the country. One can face deportation for a variety of reasons including, criminal charges, marriage fraud or engaging in other types of behavior that is detrimental to the country.
Fortunately, there are experienced immigration lawyers who can assist individuals struggling with immigration issues, including deportation. Deportation proceedings encompass very time-sensitive court filings and appearances and it is important that individuals ensure their rights are protected throughout the process.
Source: The Washington Post, "D.C. bar star J.P. Caceres avoids deportation for now", Tim Carman, Feb. 20, 2014