Kansas father fighting deportation now held in Hawaii - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Kansas father fighting deportation now held in Hawaii

It was a dramatic day on Monday for the family and supporters of Syed Ahmed Jamal, 55, who has been battling deportation since Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested him Jan. 24. (Source: Raycom Media) It was a dramatic day on Monday for the family and supporters of Syed Ahmed Jamal, 55, who has been battling deportation since Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested him Jan. 24. (Source: Raycom Media)

By MARGARET STAFFORD
Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Kansas father and husband who is fighting efforts to deport him to Bangladesh was taken off a plane that was flying him back to his native country and is being held at a detention center in Hawaii, his attorneys said Tuesday.

Federal immigration officials put Syed Ahmed Jamal, 55, who has lived in Kansas for 30 years, on the plane Monday before an immigration panel granted a temporary stay in the case. He was taken off the flight when it stopped to refuel in Honolulu, said Rekha Sharma-Crawford, one of his attorneys.

Sharma-Crawford said Tuesday that immigration officials could send him back voluntarily, but if they don't, her firm will ask a federal judge to order his return.

"It is our hope that doesn't have to happen and they will now at this point return him back to his family but we'll have to just see what happens," she said.

Jamal and his supporters have been battling his deportation since Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested him Jan. 24 at his family's home in Lawrence, where he lives with his wife and three children, who are U.S. citizens.

Until getting on the plane Monday, Jamal was being held at a detention center in El Paso, Texas. A judge lifted a temporary stay Monday morning. Sharma-Crawford said his attorneys and family were not notified before he was put on the plane. When they found out, they immediately sought a new stay from the Board of Immigration Appeals in Virginia, which granted one later Monday while Jamal was flying to Bangladesh.

ICE spokesman Carl Rusnok confirmed Tuesday that Jamal was in the Honolulu center "pending disposition of his immigration case."

As of early Tuesday afternoon, Jamal had not spoken to his family.

Jamal's possible deportation had prompted a backlash, with a protest march in Lawrence and 94,000 people signing a petition supporting him.

Rep. Emauel Cleaver, a Democrat from Missouri whose office was flooded with calls about the case, took up Jamal's cause, even visiting him in El Paso over the weekend. On Tuesday, Cleaver's spokeswoman said he is still interested in proposing a private bill that would allow Jamal to stay in the U.S.

Rep. Lynn Jenkins, whose Kansas district includes Lawrence, said before the second stay was issued Monday that she supported Jamal's efforts to have his immigration case reopened.

"My heart aches for his wife and children," Jenkins said. "I cannot imagine what they are going through during this very difficult time."

Jamal has worked as an adjunct professor and researcher at Kansas City-area colleges. He entered the U.S. legally in 1987 to attend the University of Kansas but overstayed his visa while pursuing a doctorate. He was ordered deported in 2011 but had been allowed to stay in the U.S. and check in regularly with immigration authorities.

Sharma-Crawford said Jamal has a work permit that is valid until October 2018 and that he was trying to work within what she said was a complicated immigration system.

ICE officials have consistently declined to explain why they chose to enforce the order in late January.

--------

Heather Hollingsworth in Kansas City contributed to this report.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • InternationalMore>>

  • Trump Jr: 'Nonsense' that family's profiting from presidency

    Trump Jr: 'Nonsense' that family's profiting from presidency

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 2:25 AM EST2018-02-21 07:25:49 GMT
    Wednesday, February 21 2018 3:47 PM EST2018-02-21 20:47:28 GMT

    Donald Trump Jr. says any talk that his family is profiting from his father's presidency is "nonsense" as he kicked off a highly publicized visit to India to promote real estate deals that bear his family's name.

    Donald Trump Jr. says any talk that his family is profiting from his father's presidency is "nonsense" as he kicked off a highly publicized visit to India to promote real estate deals that bear his family's name.

  • Supreme Court sides with Chicago museum in terror case

    Supreme Court sides with Chicago museum in terror case

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 10:43 AM EST2018-02-21 15:43:41 GMT
    Wednesday, February 21 2018 3:47 PM EST2018-02-21 20:47:21 GMT
    The Supreme Court is preventing survivors of a 1997 terrorist attack from seizing Persian artifacts at Chicago museums to help pay a $71.5 million default judgment against Iran.
    The Supreme Court is preventing survivors of a 1997 terrorist attack from seizing Persian artifacts at Chicago museums to help pay a $71.5 million default judgment against Iran.
  • New strikes kill 10 in rebel-held suburbs of Syrian capital

    New strikes kill 10 in rebel-held suburbs of Syrian capital

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 4:33 AM EST2018-02-21 09:33:22 GMT
    Wednesday, February 21 2018 3:47 PM EST2018-02-21 20:47:17 GMT
    Syrian rescuers say 10 people have been killed by government airstrikes and shelling on a town in the suburbs of Damascus.
    Syrian rescuers say 10 people have been killed by government airstrikes and shelling on a town in the suburbs of Damascus.
  • Government shutdown endNational politicsMore>>

  • Trump says more must be done to protect children

    Trump says more must be done to protect children

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 1:47 AM EST2018-02-21 06:47:03 GMT
    Wednesday, February 21 2018 3:47 PM EST2018-02-21 20:47:56 GMT

    On Wednesday, Trump will host a "listening session" that will include people impacted by mass shootings in Parkland, Columbine, Colorado and Newtown, Connecticut.

    On Wednesday, Trump will host a "listening session" that will include people impacted by mass shootings in Parkland, Columbine, Colorado and Newtown, Connecticut.

  • White House says US could reach 3 percent growth rate

    White House says US could reach 3 percent growth rate

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 12:13 PM EST2018-02-21 17:13:42 GMT
    Wednesday, February 21 2018 3:47 PM EST2018-02-21 20:47:44 GMT
    The White House says the U.S. could achieve annual growth rates of 3 percent through the next decade if President Donald Trump's policies on regulations and infrastructure are enacted.
    The White House says the U.S. could achieve annual growth rates of 3 percent through the next decade if President Donald Trump's policies on regulations and infrastructure are enacted.
  • Correction: Florida Shooting-Mental Health story

    Correction: Florida Shooting-Mental Health story

    Monday, February 19 2018 12:21 PM EST2018-02-19 17:21:19 GMT
    Wednesday, February 21 2018 3:47 PM EST2018-02-21 20:47:36 GMT
    The U.S. medical community is voicing mounting frustration over the Trump administration's focus on mental illness to fight mass violence.
    The U.S. medical community is voicing mounting frustration over the Trump administration's focus on mental illness to fight mass violence.
Powered by Frankly