The Arizona Republic
Jul. 21, 2005
A judge on Thursday threw out the U.S. government's deportation case against four young people who were brought to the United States illegally when they were toddlers.
U.S. Immigration Judge John Richardson granted a request to exclude key evidence in the case, ruling that border agents unlawfully singled out the four for questioning based on their ethnic appearance.
Attorneys for the defendants expect Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials to appeal the decision. The unexpected ruling - the judge had hinted in earlier hearings that he wasn't likely to grant any more extensions to setting a deportation date - brought sighs of relief to the four, who exchanged hugs and smiles with their attorneys and others.
Jaime Damian, 20, Yuliana Huicochea, 20, Oscar Corona, 20, and Luis
Nava, 21, were on a school trip in June 2002 to compete in a
solar-powered boat competition near Buffalo, N.Y., when they drew the
attention of immigration officials.