NEW YORK (AP) - The Latest on an Ecuadorean immigrant who was detained while delivering a pizza (all times local):
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he spoke on the phone with the wife of an Ecuadorean immigrant who was detained when he went to a New York military base to deliver pizza.
Cuomo expressed his “deep frustration” to Sandra Chica with what he called the federal government’s assault on New York’s immigrant families. He says he also told her that a lawyer the state has provided has already communicated with Pablo Villavicencio, who is held at a federal detention facility in New Jersey.
An Army spokeswoman says visitors to Fort Hamilton who don’t have a military identification card are required get a pass that requires a background check. The check on Villavicencio showed there was an active immigration warrant on file, at which point he was detained.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has condemned the detention of an Ecuadorean who went to a New York military base to deliver pizza.
Cuomo called Pablo Villavicencio a “hardworking man” and said separating him from his family doesn’t make America safer. Cuomo, a Democrat, offered Villacencio and his family free legal representation and services through the Liberty Defense Project, a state-led effort to assist immigrants.
Villavicencio’s wife says he took pizza to Fort Hamilton last week and was asked by a guard to show a state driver’s license but didn’t so the guard called immigration officials. An ICE spokeswoman says in March 2010 Villavicencio was granted voluntary departure by an immigration judge but failed to leave by a deadline as ordered.
An Ecuadorean pizza shop worker making a delivery to an Army garrison in Brooklyn wound up being detained after a background check revealed he was wanted for immigration law violations.
Now, Pablo Villavicencio is in Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody pending removal from the country.
Villavicencio’s wife, Sandra Chica, said her husband was a hard-working father and his treatment was “inhuman.”
An Army spokeswoman says visitors to Fort Hamilton who don’t have a military identification card are required get a pass that requires a background check.
The check on Villavicencio showed there was an active ICE warrant on file, at which point he was detained.
Federal officials say Villavicencio had been ordered to leave the country by an immigration judge but failed to depart.
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