New Jersey grandfather avoids deportation in case that drew clergy support

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Nina Pineda has the story. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez))

A New Jersey grandfather facing potential deportation has been given a reprieve.

Customs officials in Newark have approved a one-year stay of removal for Catalino Guerrero. The Union City resident's case has drawn support from numerous clergy leaders and New Jersey's two Democratic U.S. senators.

Cardinal Joseph Tobin, the head of the Newark archdiocese, the state's largest, led a rally last month on the day Guerrero met with customs officials. Video of previous coverage is in the player above.

Guerrero came to the U.S. illegally from Mexico in 1991 and has worked and paid taxes, owns his house and has no criminal record. He has four children and four grandchildren.

Guerrero applied for a work permit several years ago but filled out a form incorrectly.

"I am very relieved to see Catalino has been granted an opportunity to pursue every legal avenue to stay where he belongs: In his adoptive country, in his home and with his family here in New Jersey," Senator Robert Menendez said. "I was very proud to see how New Jerseyans rallied behind Catalino and his family, using our collective power to reject a mass deportation agenda and show we are a community that stands united for justice, fairness, and common sense."

Menendez praised the decision, along with Senator Cory Booker.

"I am pleased that Catalino will continue to have the opportunity to live the American Dream and provide a better life for himself and his family right here in New Jersey, just as he has for the past twenty-five years," Booker said. "The immigration policies proposed by the Trump Administration stand in stark contrast to some of our most fundamental American values and callously target New Jerseyans, like Catalino, who not only pose no threat to public safety, but contribute so much to what makes our state and nation strong."

Guerrero has lived in the U.S. without a criminal record for 25 years, owning a home in Union City, paying taxes and raising a family.
Related Topics:
societyimmigrationdeportationUnion City
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