Lukasz Niec was 5 years old when his parents brought him and his sister to the United States from Poland. With two suitcases in tow, his parents -- both doctors -- left behind a country on the verge of social turmoil. It was 1979, about two years before the country's authoritarian communist government declared martial law. Niec received a temporary green card and, in 1989, became a lawful permanent resident. He grew up in Michigan, went to medical school, became a doctor, and raised a daughter and stepdaughter. Niec, now 43, never fathomed that his legal status in the United States would become an issue. With a renewed green card, and nearly 40 years in the country, his Polish nationality was an afterthought for Niec, his sister told The Washington Post. He doesn't even speak Polish.
But on Tuesday morning, immigration authorities arrested Niec at his home, just after he had sent his 12-year-old stepdaughter off to school. Niec, a physician specializing in internal medicine at Bronson Healthcare Group in Kalamazoo, Michigan, has been detained in a county jail ever since, awaiting a bond hearing and possible deportation.
According to his "notice to appear" from the Department of Homeland Security, Niec's detention stems from two misdemeanor convictions from 26 years ago. In January 1992, Niec was convicted of malicious destruction of property under $100. In April of that year, he was convicted of receiving and concealing stolen property over $100 and a financial transaction device.
Niec's record has multiple blemishes. But his wife insists that he is not a risk to the public. When he renewed his permanent green card a few years ago, he was given a "false sense of security," that it would be enough, she said.
Over the decades, tens of thousands of legal residents have been deported for relatively minor offenses. But under previous administrations, immigration authorities have often let low-level offenders off the hook, prioritizing the deportations of violent criminals. A memo from the Obama administration in 2011 directed immigration officials to look at a number of factors, such as familial relationships with U.S. citizens, criminal history, education and contributions to the community, in deciding whether arrests and prosecution are warranted, as The Post's Kristine Phillips reported.
But the Trump administration has issued sweeping new guidelines expanding the range of immigrants that count as high priority for deportation, including low-level offenders, and those with no criminal record - regardless of how long they have lived in the country. Now, immigrants feel the threat of deportation more than ever, advocates say, whether they are residing here legally or not.
We will be hearing a lot more anecdotes similar to this one. A crackdown on people who have been in the US most of their lives without being naturalized doesn't just fall on brown skinned field workers. Welcome to the GOP's America.
As he procrastinated on applying for citizenship for all those years, he now has a chance to Make Poland Great Again.
This is what Trumplings voted for. If you don't like it or don't think it makes sense but didn't vote you shouldn't complain.
26 years ago? It seems like there ought to be a pretty short statute of limitations for deportation for misdemeanor offenses. I know law enforcement like to use things like that to get people suspected of worse things out, but I think that's a pretty major abuse of the system. And don't we have a shortage doctors?
It seems absolutely screwy they would go after this guy. Trump has unleashed the power trippers who don't have an once of common sense. He is here legally and on a green card? But then again, how is it this guy never went for his citizenship in this atmosphere? An 80 year old family friend who's parents brought him here from Germany as a child after WWII FINALLY went and got his citizenship last year. He saw the atmosphere changing and thought he needed to play it safe so he applied and received it pretty quickly. I don't know what his record is like but I know he has had sever traffic tickets over the years as he has a lead foot but other than that it is clean. Stupid little things like that will prevent you from even renewing a green card if a dick is reviewing it though.
Technically he's being evicted for committing 2 crimes while here on a green card. Two misdemeanors 26 years ago of all things. Pretty stupid reason to get rid of skilled labor.
I believe people with extraordinary skills are often granted citizenship.
Given that he's been a practicing Doctor in America for decades I'd say the definition can be stretched.
When you voted for a de facto war on immigrants what did you think it was going to look like? Did you think all the Mexicans would just pack up and go home and that's that?
Poland is closer to Norway than Africa. I thought trump and his sheep were okay with white European immigrants.
Did you think all the Mexicans would just pack up and go home and that's that?
#20 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2018-01-23 06:20 PM | Reply | Flag:
Didn't D-hole promise they would self deport?
Now a legal US permanent resident who is law abiding, paying taxes and raising a family is awaiting deportation over a misdemeanor from when he was a juvenile. What a sad joke America has become.
Well, they are poorly thought-out orders.
#18 | POSTED BY JEFFJ AT 2018-01-23 05:56 PM | REPLY
True, and you voted for it.
#19 | POSTED BY SITZKRIEG
LOL. One of our ideologue third party voters is telling another one of our ideologue third party voters that he voted for this.
Notice how it's "beyond dumb" when Trump does it.
As opposed to, I dunno, "a flagrant abuse of Executive Power," which is what you called it when Obama filled out his NCAA bracket ;) or failed at DAPA or succeeded with DACA.
Notice how there's no mention of the President's name, or even the associated branch of goverment when a Republican government does something "beyond dumb."
Good. We definitely don't need more damn doctors in this country.
#29 | POSTED BY MADBOMBER
Sarcasm? Irony? Stupidity? Insanity?
Really hard to tell with you.
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