Friday, February 26, 2016

AZMEX I3 21-1-16

AZMEX I3-2 21JAN 2016

UPDATE So far no details on how he got his DACA status.

Child-abuse suspect got legal status under Obama's DACA program
Brahm Resnik, 12 News
6:16 p.m. MST January 21, 2016

The Mesa man charged in the abuse of a 3-year-old girl is living in the U.S. under Pres. Obama's program protecting undocumented immigrants from being deported.

The 30-year-old Mesa man accused of sexually abusing a 3-year-old girl and offering her for sex is living in the U.S. under President Obama's program shielding young undocumented immigrants from deportation, a U.S. Department of Homeland Security official told 12 News on Thursday.

Francisco Javier Rios-Covarrubias was granted legal status and a work permit under the so-called DACA program for undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement had confirmed Wednesday that an immigration hold had been placed on Rios-Covarrubias, requesting he be turned over to ICE custody once his legal proceedings ran their course.

Rios-Covarrubias was arrested on several charges, including suspicion of sex trafficking, kidnapping and sex with a minor, after the girl was discovered Monday duct-taped and covered in feces inside the man's closet. She had been placed in a garbage bag.

RELATED: Relatives of abused 3-year-old girl speak out

Mesa police described the abuse as one of the most disturbing cases they had seen in recent years. The girl is being treated at Phoenix Children's Hospital.

Rios-Covarrubias had been baby-sitting the girl while her 22-year-old mother was working, according to police reports. The mother, Mayra Solis, is being held on child-abuse charges.

The DACA program -- Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals -- was created by the Obama Administration in June, 2012 to grant legal status to undocumented immigrants who entered the country before their 16th birthdays and before June, 2007. They are eligible for renewable two-year work permits and protection from deportation.

A DHS spokeswoman provided the following statement to 12 News regarding Rios-Covarrubias' status:

"Deferred action is an exercise of prosecutorial discretion. Therefore, deferred action may be denied or terminated at any time. Factors making deferred action inappropriate would include, but not be limited to, threats to public safety or national security."

Arizona has the sixth-largest number of DACA recipients in the country, according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

As of the end of last September, 25,494 DACA applications had been approved since 2012, and 16,162 permits were renewed.

California leads the nation, with 202,000 applications approved.

The president's expansion of the program through executive action two years ago is being challenged before the U.S. Supreme Court.

That executive action has been suspended pending the outcome of the court case.


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