Earlier this week, Daniela Vargas became the latest DREAMer detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The 22-year-old, who was brought to the U.S. from Argentina when she was just 7 years old, now faces deportation. Vargas, whose brother and father were detained last week, was detained after she spoke at a immigration rally and press conference at City Hall in Jackson, Mississippi.
According to The New York Times, Vargas was in a car leaving the press conference when her car was stopped by police. The Clarion-Ledger reports that I.C.E. agents stopped the car with Vargas inside, quickly arrested her and said, “You know who we are, you know what we’re here for.” According to the BBC, Vargas was detained and is being processed for visa overstay since her DACA status expired in November 2016. She was attempting to save the $495 necessary to renew. Vargas applied for renewal in mid-February.
“Today, my father and brother await deportation while I continue to fight this battle as a DREAMer to help contribute to this country, which I feel is very much my country,” Vargas said at the press conference before she was detained, according to The Clarion-Ledger. “Now, I’m not so sure my dream will continue to develop,” she said. “A path for citizenship is necessary for DACA recipients but also for the other 11 million undocumented people with dreams.”
According to The Huffington Post, ICE officials made a statement on Wednesday saying that Vargas will be subject to court proceedings deciding her eligibility of relief. Abigail Peterson, Vargas’ attorney, told The Huffington Post that she was informed on Thursday that ICE plans on pursuing immediate deportation and bypassing any court hearings.
Vargas’ attorney shared a full statement from Vargas to The Huffington Post and you can read it here.