S.F. Suspect Not Alone in Dodging Deportation

Kevin Fagan, San Francisco Chronicle, March 28, 2012

Kestutis Zadvydas was the opposite of what most people would envision as an ideal immigrant to the United States. He was a convicted thief and cocaine dealer, and U.S. officials ordered him deported in 1994 to his native Germany.

But Zadvydas was never sent home.

Neither were, by some counts, thousands of other convicted criminals marked for deportation to their countries of origin in the past decade—including Binh Thai Luc, 35, who is accused in last week’s slayings of five people in a San Francisco row house.

The potential deportees were all held in prison for up to six months, then set free under a 2001 U.S. Supreme Court ruling barring immigrants from being locked up indefinitely while awaiting deportation. The trouble in all these instances was that their home countries would not take them back.

{snip}

In Luc’s case, it was Vietnam in 2006. He’d just finished serving eight years in state prison for robbing a Chinese restaurant and trying to rob a car electronics store in San Jose, but after a federal judge ordered him kicked out of the country, his homeland refused to issue travel documents.

Six years later, he sits in San Francisco County Jail charged with five counts of murder with special circumstances. The victims—a couple in their 60s, their grown children and their son’s girlfriend—were bludgeoned and attacked with an unspecified sharp weapon, police said.

Outrage over the freeing of a man now accused of slaughtering a house full of people reached back to Washington, D.C., where Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, is trying to pass a bill to peel back the 2001 mandate.

“Just because a criminal immigrant cannot be returned to their home country does not mean they should be freed into our communities,” said Smith, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. “Dangerous immigrants need to be detained.”

{snip}

Smith’s bill, awaiting a vote in the full House, would supersede the Supreme Court ruling and allow immigrants with criminal records whose home countries won’t take them to be held indefinitely by Homeland Security.

Detainees would be reassessed every six months for release and be able to fight for freedom through the courts.

The Supreme Court ruling that Smith’s bill would replace is called Zadvydas vs. Davis. In it, the justices held that Zadvydas’ convictions were no justification for incarcerating him indefinitely after Germany, Lithuania and his wife’s homeland, the Dominican Republic, refused to take him.

A complicating factor for Zadvydas was that he was stateless. He was born in a camp in U.S.-controlled Germany

{snip}

Immigrant advocates said allowing the government to imprison people indefinitely after they’ve already paid for their offenses is wrong.

“The idea of trying to foresee who will commit crimes and lock them up before they commit them is unconstitutional,” said Julia Harumi Mass, staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California.

“If a person can’t be removed from the United States but has served his or her criminal sentence, we should not create some kind of preventative detention program that tries to speculate about the risk this person may pose,” Mass said. “That’s just not the kind of country we want to live in.”

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  • Oil Can Harry

    Whenever a home country won’t take back a criminal the deportee should be sent ashore off the coast of Somalia, his new home.

  • Rjs

    It is truly amazing we have even gotten to the point where these people have settled here in such large numbers.

    If there were no illegal aliens in the US:

    Would the crime rate be higher, lower or about the same?

    Would the poverty rate be higher, lower or about the same?

    Would the quality of school systems be higher, lower or about the same?

    Would the amount of taxpayer funded entitlements by higher, lower or about the same?

    Would overall conditions be better, worse or about the same?

    Would taxes be higher, lower or about the same?

    The answers to the above questions are so obvious.  How can the United States benefit from illegal aliens increasing both in numbers and percentage while inhabiting more areas?

     
     

    • The_Bobster

      The legal ones are dragging us down, too. Most of them have low IQ’s and come from countries with cultures of corruption.

  • From what I understand Vietnam has an agreement now with the US to repatriate their citizens who have committed crimes in the US. But hopefully, this guy won’t ever be free again to hurt anyone else. 

  • Air drop them back to their homelands, parachute optional.

  • The course of action is clear, but I suspect we do not have anyone in our government with the courage or moral fortitude to take the stance. Take your criminal scum back or we cut off all legal immigration from your country as well as all cash aid!

    • IstvanIN

      We should do that anyway.

  •  We have an Air Force… Drop him out onto their territory anyway!

  • Xanthippe2

    “What happens when no country will take a foreign criminal?”  Well, if we didn’t take foreign criminals as
    immigrants and prevented illegal immigration this wouldn’t be a problem, would
    it?  As a minimum the US should not take ANY
    legal immigrants from countries who will not their immigrants who become criminals
    back again.  But even under the current
    situation, I doubt if the situation is as unalterable as the SF Comical presents
    it to be.

     

    Situation 1: US — We would like to deport Johnny Thug.

        Foreign Country —
    No, we don’t want him.

        US- Oh, OK.

     

    Situation 2: US – We would like to deport Johnny Thug.

        FC — No, we don’t
    want him.

       US – Well, there is
    that trade agreement, (or any number of other things which could be used to put
    pressure on the uncooperative country.)

  • Kurt Plummer

    Oh brother…

    >>
    Immigrant advocates said allowing the government to imprison people indefinitely after they’ve already paid for their offenses is wrong.
    >>

    Something most people don’t understand is that we live in the opposite of the world ‘as it was’, when whites fled the dictatorial largesse of most certainly _not benevolent_ despots in Europe who didn’t want to change a thing.  Because control meant free labor and taxes over a population they _despised_.

    Nowadays, the government may well continue to despise us but it is -because- we are stable and professional and restrained in our life styles.  Which means we manage debt rather than spending like freaks of nature.  Which enables a debt economy of constantly circulated currencies and junk consumerism.

    Unfortunately, they refuse to acknowledge that -other countries- still value people like us.  And so they -dump- their unwanted garbage on the U.S. without regret or intent to acknowledge the huge health and criminality and general lack of skills that these ‘poor masses, yearning to break free’ really represent.

    And then there’s the liberals:

    >>
    “The idea of trying to foresee who will commit crimes and lock them up before they commit them is unconstitutional,” said Julia Harumi Mass, staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California.
    >>

    The Constitution does not and should not apply to foreign nationals, nor should there be any consideration of ‘If you were in their place’ because _we’re not_.  And we wouldn’t be accepted in Germany or the Dominican Republic or Lithuania if we -were-.

    Protect what you have and wish your posterity to have or truly become the enemy among you: impoverished, criminal, with zero prospects in a ruined society as gene-culture.

    >>
    “If a person can’t be removed from the United States but has served his or her criminal sentence, we should not create some kind of preventative detention program that tries to speculate about the risk this person may pose,” Mass said. “That’s just not the kind of country we want to live in.”
    >>

    Why not?  They are first generation immigrants who have proven their poisonous intent as coming from a differentiated culture where poverty and criminality are rampant and promptly proceeding to ‘make our home their own’ as a function of hurting us.

    Point Blank:  ‘speculation’ doesn’t have to exist if you close the borders, declare an incarceration state like one of the Dakotas or Nevada and let people’s _preceding actions_ be the means by which they are locked up.  Put another way: we don’t need socially if not intellectually retarded people from the likes of Vietnam.  And any country whom we do cream the top from should be willing to sign an ‘acceptance of repatriation in case of crime or personal wishes’ condition.  Or lose the right to be on the emmigration lottery list.

    Period.