Carbondale man avoids deportation |

Carbondale man avoids deportation

John Gardner
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” Rene Hernandez is happy to be close to his family after a Denver Immigration Court judge cancelled the Carbondale resident’s deportation case Friday.

Hernandez, 34, said Monday that he was nervous Friday morning before he went to court because he thought that he would be deported and would not be able to remain close to his two young sons.

“I was so happy that we won the case,” Hernandez said. “Because my boys are more important to me than anything. I am so happy that I am able to stay.”

According to Ted Hess, Hernandez’s Glenwood Springs attorney, Hernandez will now become a lawful permanent resident, unless the Department of Homeland Security successfully appeals the case. The department has until April 20 to file an appeal, which Hess expects to happen.

Hess also stated in an e-mail to the Post Independent that cancellation of removal is a rare event and that there is a nationwide limit of 4,000 granted each year.

“Legally, his case is interesting because there are only three published cases by the Board of Immigration Appeals on post-1997 cancellations of removal,” Hess said.

In all three of those cases, according to Hess, the assumption was that the children involved would return to Mexico if the immigrant was deported. However, it was clear that the children would stay in the U.S. in Hernandez’s case.

Hernandez illegally entered the U.S. from Guerrero, Mexico, in 1994, according to Hess. He was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in 2006 after a domestic violence arrest, which occurred when he encountered his wife at the Oasis nightclub in Glenwood Springs.

Since getting a divorce in 2007, Hernandez has made child support payments of $924 a month.

The decision to grant the cancellation, according to Hess, was based upon the argument that if deported Hernandez would not be able to provide for his two American citizen sons because they would remain in Carbondale, with their mother, to whom Hernandez is no longer married.

In order for a court to grant the cancellation, an illegal immigrant must prove three stipulations: 10 years continuous presence in the U.S.; good moral character; and an exceptional and extremely unusual hardship to one or more U.S. citizens, which in this case happened to be his two young sons.

Contact John Gardner: 384-9114

Support Local Journalism