Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Deported in 1997, Suffern man again faces deportation (Lower Hudson Journal News)

Deported in 1997, Suffern man again faces deportation

By Khurram Saeed
The Journal News • September 24, 2008

SUFFERN - A 39-year-old village man arrested after his wife was threatened with a knife early this year is set to be deported after Suffern police learned he was living in the country illegally.

Jose L. Salas of Oakdale Manor had been deported a decade ago for entering the United States using a phony identity, but, at some point, he returned to the country and settled in Suffern.

Salas is from Peru.

On Jan. 18, police responded to Salas' home and arrested him after finding out that he had threatened his wife with a knife, police Detective Craig Long said last night.

The couple have a child, 7.

Salas was charged with second-degree menacing and fourth-degree possession of a weapon, both misdemeanors.

A routine fingerprint check of Salas came back with a different name. Suffern police then contacted U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

"The investigation began to determine who he really was," Long said.

Authorities soon found out that Salas had been deported in 1997 because he had entered the country using false documents. Long said Salas had been working at a local supermarket.

"He was living and working in the community, but nobody knows for how long," Long said.

On Monday, Salas pleaded guilty in village court to a reduced charge of harassment, a violation.

ICE issued an immigration detainer form placed on Salas, which allowed them to take him into custody yesterday morning after he spent the night in a holding cell.

Suffern has applied to join a federal program, known as 287(g), that lets local and state agencies partner with ICE by checking into the immigration status of certain people. The agencies would have access to federal databases and can detain people on immigration charges. Village officials are waiting to see if they will be approved for the program.

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