USA Today reported Tuesday that an illegal immigrant protected by Barack Obama’s amnesty was deported in February after spending an evening with his girlfriend.
However, a Department of Homeland Security spokesman told The Daily Caller that this story is false because Juan Manuel Montes Bojorquez did not receive amnesty and was caught climbing over a border fence when he was detained.
The USA Today story said that Bojorquez, 23, was apprehended by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents while he was waiting for a car ride to pick him up.
According to the article, he told the officers he left his wallet in his friend’s car and, because he didn’t have his ID or proof of his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status, he was deported.
“Within three hours, he was back in Mexico, becoming the first undocumented immigrant with active DACA status deported by the Trump administration’s stepped-up deportation policy,” the USA Today reporters wrote.
The Trump administration has said it will continue honoring the over 750,000 illegal immigrants who receive DACA, but this incident, if accurate, would have been a departure of that policy. David Lapan, a DHS spokesman, told TheDC, “Juan Manuel Montes Bojorquez was apprehended by the Calexico Station Border Patrol after illegally entering the U.S. by climbing over the fence in downtown Calexico. He was arrested by BP just minutes after he made his illegal entry and admitted under oath during the arrest interview that he had entered illegally.”
The spokesman added, “His DACA status expired in Aug. 2015 and he was notified at that time. In addition, he has a conviction for theft for which he received probation.”
This incorrect story from USA Today received a swift reaction on Twitter. Sean McElwee, a policy analyst at Demos Action, said it was “absolutely horrifying.” MSNBC host Christopher Hayes said, “This is profoundly messed up.” Gizmodo staff writer Libby Watson tweeted, “the lack of due process and basic decency for immigrants is really astounding. can’t be covered enough.”
Earlier Tuesday morning, DHS Secretary John Kelly condemned false news stories in a speech at George Washington University. “So I make my way up the Beltway every day, and I use that hour or so to read the news clips about DHS. It’s one of the first two things I do every day—the other is the daily intelligence briefing,” Kelly said. “In one, I read what other people are saying about me—and more important, what they’re saying about my people. In the other, I learn about what’s really going on.”