Local News

Families seek last-minute reprieve as brothers face deportation

Posted December 4, 2017 6:26 p.m. EST
Updated December 4, 2017 6:41 p.m. EST

— After more than a decade of fighting to stay in the U.S., two brothers who live in Wake County are in federal custody awaiting deportation to Mexico.

Dario and Jose Delgado came to the U.S. illegally more than 20 years ago with their parents, who were seeking political asylum. A spokesman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said the brothers were first ordered to be removed from the country in 2005, adding that their cases have been "extensively litigated."

"I feel very sad about it because my dad didn't do anything wrong. He pays taxes like everyone else who lives here does, and he hasn't done anything bad. He's not a criminal," said Jennifer Delgado-Garcia, one of Dario Delgado's daughters.

The family was part of a group that protested Monday outside the North Carolina Republican Party headquarters in Raleigh, hoping to put pressure on North Carolina's congressional representatives to intervene on behalf of the brothers.

Both men have jobs, relatives said, and aside from one traffic violation, neither has a criminal record. The brothers also have spent the last 10 years working through the courts to become legal residents.

Relatives said a lawyer failed to file the proper paperwork to continue the appeals process, which led to them being picked up by ICE agents and the pending deportation, which could happen as soon as Tuesday.

"We just want our dads back – that's basically it," said Stephanie Delgado, Jose Delgado's daughter. "I don't know if we would be able to be financially stable without him because he brings food to our table, and we need him a lot."

"It's depressing because you wake up in the morning and you try to forget, but then, at the end of the day, you remember that your dad is not coming home to sleep," said Yhairi Delgado-Garcia, another of Dario Delgado's daughters.