Trump Supporter ‘Feels Betrayed’ After Her Undocumented Husband Is Deported – Because She Thought the President Would Only Deport ‘Bad Hombres’
Ariel Zilber, Daily Mail, April 6, 2017
An Indiana woman who voted for Donald Trump for president last November was shocked to discover that the federal government deported her husband to Mexico on Wednesday after he had been in the country illegally for almost 20 years, KTLA reported.
When Trump vowed to crack down on illegal immigration during the presidential campaign, Helen Beristain decided to vote for him even though she was married to Roberto Beristain, an undocumented migrant from Mexico.
Helen Beristain believed Trump would never deport her husband, with whom she has four children.
Roberto Beristain has also been rooted in the community of Granger, Indiana, where he owns a restaurant.
She thought her husband was safe because of Trump‘s vow to only deport ‘bad hombres’ – or undocumented migrants with criminal records.
Trump also indicated during the campaign that he would not break up families.
Even after Roberto, who has no criminal record, was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement in March, Helen Beristain said: ‘I don’t think ICE is out there to detain anyone and break families, no.’
But ICE went ahead and did just that – driving Roberto Beristain to the US-Mexico border on Wednesday, where he crossed into our neighbor to the south by foot through the El Paso, Texas, entry point.
The deportation was carried out after lawyers filed motions in federal court on Roberto Beristain’s behalf, asking to allow him to remain in the country.
‘They suddenly told me it was time to go,’ Roberto Beristain was quoted as saying.
‘They told me to get my stuff, they put me in the back of a van and sped toward the border. They took me to another facility while in transport to sign paperwork.’
‘I asked to speak with my attorney, but was told there wasn’t time for that. At around 10pm, I was dropped off at the Mexico-US border and walked into Mexico.’
‘He hadn’t committed any crimes. He didn’t even have a parking ticket,’ Adam Ansari, a family attorney representing the Beristains, said.
‘From everyone’s accounts he is probably one of the most lovable guys you will ever meet. He is a loving husband and father. And he put a lot of work into his restaurant.’
ICE issued a statement to CNN which read: ‘On April 4, 2017, officers with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) removed Roberto Beristain Cegueda to Mexico via Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.’
‘ERO officers turned him over to Mexican authorities at the Paso Del Norte Port of Entry in El Paso, Texas.’
The case has attracted significant media attention because of Helen Beristain’s support for Trump.
Last month, she explained why she voted for the Republican.
‘We don’t want to have cartels here, you don’t want to have drugs in your high schools, you don’t want killers next to you,’ she told WTIU.
‘You want to feel safe when you leave your house. I truly believe that. And, this is why I voted for Mr. Trump.’
‘I think our President is going to keep all the good people here,’ Helen Beristain told WSBT last month.
‘He is not going to tear up families. I don’t think he wants to do that. He just wants to keep us safe.’
Now, her attorney, Ansari, says she feels betrayed by Trump.
Still, Trump’s tough rhetoric about undocumented migrants from Mexico during the campaign begs the question: Why did she vote for him in the first place?
‘Granger is in a very Republican town,’ Ansari said.
‘She has a lot of conservative people around her. They run a steakhouse that serves very working-class individuals. She is in the middle of Indiana. If everyone around you is only saying one thing…people live in news bubbles.’
Roberto Beristain first arrived in the US in 1998. Here to visit a relative, he decided to stay even though he didn’t have a proper visa.
Beristain was first arrested 17 years ago after he took a wrong turn while driving in Niagara Falls on a family vacation.
He ended up driving over the Canadian border and was stopped as he tried to get back in to the US. After failing to produce any documentation he was arrested.
He spent the next few weeks in jail before being told he had a few months to leave the country.
Beristain ignored the order, choosing instead to stay with his wife, who was pregnant at the time. Helen Beristain said her husband has been working hard to get citizenship ever since.
Roberto was under ICE supervision, which meant he was checking in with the agency annually.
‘What they do is say, “okay, if you don’t commit any felonies or any crimes or anything bad, DUI, traffic tickets, then you can proceed with your documents to get your green card and to become a citizen in the United States”,’ Helen said.
‘And that’s what Roberto was doing.’
But when Roberto drove to the ICE offices in Indianapolis last month, he was detained.
‘He has employment authorization,’ said Ansari.
‘For five years he had been voluntarily showing up at the ICE office in Florida, where his immigration attorney lives.’
‘This year when he flew down to Florida, he was sent back to Indiana. He drove to the ICE office in Indianapolis and that is where he was detained.’
They have been raising four kids together – one from a previous marriage. All of the children have US citizenship.
‘It is fundamentally unfair to do this to a person whether you have your papers or not,’ Ansari said.
‘He has been here for 20 years. He has a family and a business. You are not going to give him an opportunity for relief? He has contributed so much to his community. As United States citizens we can give him that much.’