Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Woman awaiting deportation dies of heart problem (Seattle Post Intelligencer)

Woman awaiting deportation dies of heart problem
Published 07:40 p.m., Wednesday, July 27, 2011

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Immigration officials say a woman who was being held at the Albany County Jail while awaiting deportation to France has died of a heart condition.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement says 29-year-old Irene Bamenga, an Angolan national and French citizen, was taken into custody July 15 in Lewiston after being denied entry into Canada. On Wednesday, one of her cell mates in Albany called a guard to report Bamenga was ill.

Bamenga was taken to Albany Medical Center by ambulance and was pronounced dead there. Officials say she had been on medication for congestive heart failure.

An autopsy determined the cause of death was cardiomyopathy, a deterioration of heart muscles.

Immigration officials say Bamenga is the ninth detainee to die in custody in fiscal year 2011.

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