Here’s Why A DACA Beneficiary Was Forced To Leave The US To Mexico, Where He Was Kidnapped And Killed

credit: Manuel Cano

Nineteen-year-old Manuel Antonio Cano Pacheco — a former DACA beneficiary — returned to Mexico, after being advised to do so by his lawyer.

Cano Pacheco lived in Des Moines, Iowa, after coming to the U.S illegally at the age of three and attended high school there. However, last year Cano Pacheco was charged with two misdemeanors, which meant that he lost his DACA status, CNN reports. That meant that Cano Pacheco was now vulnerable for deportation.

While awaiting his immigration hearing, Cano Pacheco was charged with yet another misdemeanor and his lawyer advised him to leave the U.S. voluntarily in order to not face the harsh penalties of a formal deportation, which could include being barred from re-entering the U.S. for ten years.

On April 10, Cano Pacheco returned to Mexico and three weeks later he was killed.

His family say they have no idea why Cano Pacheco would be targeted considering he had yet to meet up with any family there.

“He didn’t have any problems,” his mother said, according to CNN. “He didn’t know anyone in Mexico. He didn’t even know our family until he got there. He went to the store at 5 p.m. on a Friday. Then he went missing.”

On May 18, ABC News is reporting that Cano Pacheco was kidnapped and killed in Zacatecas, Mexico.

His family could not attend his funeral in Mexico because his mom didn’t want to risk not being able to return to the U.S.

“The entire family is devastated,” his mother said to CNN. “I almost wanted to return to Mexico but my other children don’t have passports and I would risk not being able to come back. We’ve never left the country before.”

Cano Pacheco leaves behind three siblings and a one-year son.

“He was really happy in Iowa. It was the only home he knew,” his mom said. “He loved school and loved soccer. On his days off from school he would work as a mechanic.”


READ: After Four Years Fighting In The Marines, This Deported Veteran Came Back To The US In A Casket

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