‘You’re Welcome here’: Lawyer, Legislator offer tips Amid Fears of Immigration Sweep

Although President Donald Trump postponed a nationwide immigration sweep of people living illegally in the United States, a state legislator organized an information session Sunday in West Chicago offering tips for those who believe they may be targeted.

Immigration attorney Rocio Becerril led the discussion at St. Andrew Lutheran Church hosted by Democratic state Rep. Karina Villa of West Chicago. She told audience members about their rights if U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents come to their homes.

“Honestly, the foundation is education,” Becerril said before her talk. “Under the Constitution, there’s the 4th Amendment against searches and seizures. Everybody’s protected whether you are documented or not. Every person touching U.S. soil, they have protections under the laws.”

Attendees received a “Know Your Rights!” card that they were instructed to hand to local law enforcement, federal immigration agents or other officers. In part, the card says the holder will remain silent and exercise legal rights by refusing to answer questions until having talked to an attorney.

In delaying the planned ICE sweep that drew criticism from immigrant advocates, Trump said he’s giving lawmakers two weeks to come up with solutions for what he termed asylum and loophole problems at the U.S.-Mexico border. The planned operation was supposed to target people with final orders of removal, including families whose immigration cases had been fast-tracked by judges.

St. Andrew member Esteban Gutierrez Perez of West Chicago, who’s been in the United States illegally for 19 years, said through a Spanish translator that he’s optimistic Congress and the president will reach an understanding.

By Bob Susnjara for DAILY HERALD

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