Thursday, August 20, 2009

Legal Resident Being Held by CCA & ICE at Stewart Detention Center

Written by The 270 View
August 20, 2009

Carlos Aranda was living the American dream. He is married, with a two year old child and a house in Atlanta, Georgia. His hard work has paid off and he was just recently promoted at work. Family members describe him as a good person and a hard working American who had immigrated here from Mexico for a better life. His parents and all of his other relatives also live in the United States.

On August 6, 2009 Carlos Aranda was asked to come into his probation officers office due to a paperwork problem. What Carlos Aranda did not know is that Immigration agents were waiting to take him into custody. Mr. Aranda had been on probation for a crime that he had committed in 2000 at the age of 17. He currently has no bond due to a paperwork error that allegedly was made by Douglas County law enforcement.

Mr. Aranda is not here illegally. His family states that he has a valid drivers licence, passport and social security card . He was granted residency in 1994. His residency in the United States was renewed by the United States government on January 15, 2009 and was approved until 2019. He was honest about his minor criminal record with immigration. They say that he has done things the right way and that he has paid taxes for fifteen years.

For the last two weeks Mr. Aranda has been locked up and possibly will face deportation in the near future. He is currently held at Correction Corporation of America's for profit Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Georgia. During his time at the Stewart Detention Center family members have stated that Mr. Aranda has had to deal with deplorable conditions and a very unsanitary environment. They allege that soap and other hygiene items are not readily available and that their relative has been placed in a housing unit with violent offenders who have threatened him on more than one occasion. They also state that he has become sick since being placed in the facility. Mr. Aranda has allegedly also had to endure several hours of heat outdoors with no available drinking water followed by several days without being allowed outside again. Family members are very worried about the isolation he faces in a facility located so far away from people who desperately wish to be able to at least visit with him on a regular basis. They are also concerned by the bad attitudes that they state CCA employee's have shown them during Carlos Aranda's detention at the Stewart Detention facility. The physical distance from any available legal representation and the remote location of the detention center also poses a significant problem to him being able to regularly access the legal resources and legal professionals that he urgently needs to speak with about his case.

Since his detention things have not been easy on his family. Carlos Aranda's wife, Margaret Williams, states that she is currently seeing a doctor for anxiety and emotional stress that she is under from the whole situation. The family is on the verge of losing everything that they have worked hard for. Carlos Aranda's two year old son just wants to know "Where is my daddy." For Carlos Aranda and his family the American dream has just become a nightmare.

The 270 View Internet blog hopes that by highlighting his current case the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency will quickly release Carlos Aranda so that he can rejoin his family before they suffer even more hardship. Mr. Aranda's job is currently being held by his employer but without a timely release he will be joining the ranks of the recession unemployed and his family will be facing an even worse situation. Carlos Aranda's family states that he has never missed a probation appointment and is not a flight risk. Keeping him behind bars in a possibly unsafe environment and away from his family is just wrong. Carlos Aranda is a legal American resident. At the very least he deserves to be given bond while his citizenship problems are addressed.