"We have to be careful we don't release the wrong person"
Hence, we imprison and deport American citizens for immigration violations.
Thomas Warziniack was born in Minnesota and grew up in Georgia, but immigration authorities pronounced him an illegal immigrant from Russia.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement has held Warziniack for weeks in an Arizona detention facility with the aim of deporting him to a country he’s never seen. His jailers shrugged off Warziniack’s claims that he was an American citizen, even though they could have retrieved his Minnesota birth certificate in minutes and even though a Colorado court had concluded that he was a U.S. citizen a year before it shipped him to Arizona.
During a deportation hearing Thursday morning, pleas by Warziniack’s family and lawyer to release him, as well as a copy of his birth certificate proving his citizenship, did little to deter the government.
“The immigration agents told me they never make mistakes,” Warziniack said in a phone interview from jail. “All I know is that somebody dropped the ball.”
The story of how immigration officials decided that a small-town drifter with a Southern accent was an illegal Russian immigrant illustrates how the federal government mistakenly detains and sometimes deports American citizens.
The whole article (which is a must read) makes The Trial seem like a due process Shangri-La by comparison.
The title quote, BTW, is from Ernestine Fobbs, whom McClatchy describes as a spokeswoman for “ICE, the federal agency that oversees deportations”.