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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Undocumented Ralliers Go to Trial

Posted by Alex Zielinski on Wed, May 2, 2012 at 3:59 PM

Diana Bandas arrest
  • Portland Occupier
  • Diana Banda's arrest

Two of the four arrested undocumented rallying immigrants have been released from the Multnomah County Jail—and it looks like the others will shortly join them. But not with a clean record.

During yesterday's permitted May Day rally, a group of undocumented immigrants staged a rally against Obama's Secure Communities program (which has previously rubbed the community the wrong way) and called for the release of their fellow undocumented friend who is currently in the Tacoma, WA Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Detainment Center. Four of the protesters were arrested, upon request, and sent to Multnomah County Jail.

"It gets to a point where you have to step out from the shadow and realize that no one is going to do anything if you don't do it," says Diana Banda, who was released within two hours yesterday but said she was prepared to be deported.

Two of the ralliers were released with dropped charges yesterday, leaving the other two to deal with county charges and an ICE hold (meaning their fingerprints were sent to the federal ICE headquarters). While a trial in the community court today dropped these remaining detainees' charges, Judge Terry Hannon said that they are still being held with other charges.

What does that mean, exactly?
Attorney Kenneth Kreuscher says that Liliana Luna and Ricardo Valera are currently placed on ICE hold, even though their charges were dropped. However, he says, both are slated to be released by tomorrow. But this doesn't mean that their ICE file will be dropped.

"It's crazy," says National Immigrant Youth Alliance's Mohammad Abdollahi. "Secure Communities is meant to target people who are criminals. These people's charges have been dropped, but their fingerprints are still going to ICE. Something's wrong here."

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