Tucson woman, 30 other "dreamers," detained trying to enter US
Simone Del Rosario
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
LAREDO, Texas (KGUN9-TV) - Thirty undocumented immigrants, brought to the U.S. as children, are detained at the port of entry near Laredo, Texas, Monday.
Among the "dreamers" is 19-year-old Lorena Vargas of Tucson.
She's hoping to follow in the footsteps of the Dream 9, who back in July were granted asylum in Arizona. But Lorena's family told Nine On Your Side she's not trying to make a political statement; she just wants to come home.
The group chants, "Let's go home!" at the Laredo port, while back in Tucson Lorena's mother watches online, glued to the screen.
Lorena has been stuck in Mexico since she traveled out of the U.S. to apply for an immigrant visa at the U.S. Consulate in Ciudad Juarez back in February 2012.
Her mother, Mirna Vargas, now a U.S. citizen, said that because of a discrepancy on Lorena's birth certificate, the consulate denied her application, saying she cannot reapply for 10 years.
The consulate said Lorena, who came to the U.S. with her family in 2000, returned to Mexico for her birth certificate registration in 2002, and re-entered the U.S. illegally.
Lorena's family said she was never present for the registration; her grandfather had the birth certificate processed without Lorena or her mother in the country.
Since the denial, Lorena's family has tried everyting to get her back across the border, even writing to congressmen and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.
Her mother says it's the last hope to bring her home.
But Ira Mehlman of the Federation for American Immigration Reform said immigration policies are in place for a reason.
"We understand why people want to come to the United States; but we also need to understand why we need to limit immigration in the United States," Mehlman said. "The question is: What impact does that person's presence and millions of other people just like that individual have on the rest of the American society?"
Still, Mirna Vargas holds out hope that Lorena will be able to return home. In the future, she hopes Lorena can continue her schooling and that her family can finally go back to normal.