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Posts tagged ‘U.S. State Department’


Blanca Maria Alfaro is again officially a U.S. citizen after the U.S. government illegally deported, exiled, and detained her.

Blanca Maria Alfaro is again officially a U.S. citizen after the U.S. government illegally deported, exiled, and detained her.

Blanca Maria Alfaro has always been a U.S. citizen. She was born in Houston, Texas on December 17, 1979.

In 1995, Blanca applied for and received a U.S. passport based on her Texas Birth Certificate.  In 1998, Blanca traveled from El Salvador to JFK International Airport in New York. She presented her U.S. passport for admission. The nightmare that ensued has finally ended today when she received her third U.S. passport after having been illegally deported, exiled, and detained over the course of the last 15 years.

The INS officials at the time did not believe Blanca was a U.S. citizen. She did not speak English because she grew up from the age of 5 in El Salvador. She was 18 and this was her first time coming back to her native land of the United States. In 1998 at JFK, INS officials unlawfully detained Blanca, interrogating her for hours and threatening her with serious bodily harm unless she admitted that she was not the person listed on her passport.

After hours of this relentless torture, Blanca supposedly made a false confession. She signed a “sworn statement”, written in English, that she was someone else and that she was born in El Salvador. This was a clear false confession, as can be seen from the evidence on record.

After being illegally deported to El Salvador, Blanca immediately went to the U.S. Embassy in El Salvador to apply for a new U.S. passport. After a 9 month investigation, State Department officials issued Blanca her second U.S. passport.

Blanca was again subjected to a marathon interrogation when she attempted to enter the U.S. in 1999 with her second U.S. passport. If it were not for the intervention of a friendly INS official, she may have been deported again. She was released into the U.S. as a U.S. citizen in 1999 after a family member convinced INS officials that she was in fact a U.S. citizen.

Blanca entered the U.S. with her second U.S. passport again in 2001 and 2004 without incident. When she went to register her children as U.S. citizens in the Embassy in San Salvador in 2005, State Department officials unlawfully confiscated her second U.S. passport, essentially revoking her U.S. citizenship without affording her any due process of law.

For the second time, Blanca was stripped of her right to U.S. citizenship without any due process of law. Instead of giving Blanca a chance to confront evidence against her, the U.S. embassy officials in El Salvador told Blanca that the case was in Washington and nothing could be done.

As it turned out, State Department officials in Washington D.C. did nothing with Blanca’s case until her second U.S. passport was “revoked” in 2012 by a State Department attorney, who admitted to not having  nearly enough evidence to make a meaningful decision. In other words, the State Department broke the law several times: First when it confiscated her passport in 2005 and second when it inexplicably delayed the revocation decision for about 7 years.

Blanca realized that the U.S. government would never allow her to return to her native country of the United States. In March of 2013, she applied for admission to the U.S. at a border crossing in Texas, showing her Texas birth certificate, Social Security Card, and New York Photo identification as proof of U.S. citizenship.

Again, immigration officials did not believe Blanca. She was detained for 17 days until attorneys at ICE’s Office of Chief Counsel in Oakdale Louisiana released her from detention because they believed she was a U.S. citizen.

She was not out of the woods yet. ICE’s decision only meant that they would not affirmatively push for her deportation from the United States. Released into the U.S., she was stateless.

We became the attorneys for Blanca in April of this year. We always believed that she was a U.S. citizen, even when journalists and a Congressman abandoned Blanca because apparently the U.S. government can do no wrong unless the narrative is a crystal clear black and white.

Our perseverance paid off.

Today, Blanca’s U.S. citizenship was officially recognized for a third time.

The U.S. State Department issued her a U.S. passport.

Customs and Border Protection Tortures Individuals To Deprive Them of Their Birthright to U.S. Citizenship

The State Department’s primary basis for revoking my client’s U.S. citizenship was a sworn statement taken by CBP officials on 09/24/1998.

As revealed by a State Department attorney in yesterday’s post, the State Department does not do anything to corroborate the veracity of sworn statements taken while detained in the custody of CBP or ICE.

Even if the sworn statement has multiple inconsistencies and is only sworn to after an extensive interrogation under detention, State Department policy dictates that the statement still must be considered as evidence in favor of revoking or denying an individual’s U.S. citizenship. Moreover, the State Department’s policy does not offer the person under investigation any opportunity to confront the content of a sworn statement.

My client’s case is a perfect example of what can and does go wrong because of the U.S. government’s arrogant disrespect for the human rights of its own U.S. citizens.

A request under the Freedom of Information Act reveals that my client’s sworn statement contained numerous alleged facts that are directly contradicted by facts in the record, that she was detained without any reasonable suspicion, and that her “confession” was not obtained until after an interrogation (the length and conditions of the interrogation are not specificied by CBP. However, in conversations with myself and in numerous sworn statements my client has stated that she was tied up in a room, interrogated for hours by multiple agents, and threatened with serious harm unless she admitted she was a person other than the one listed on the passport.)

The following are notes typed up by CBP officials immediately after she was coerced into giving a confession:

CBP notes from 09/24/1998

CBP notes from 09/24/1998

The signs of fraud cited to by CBP could not have existed because my client presented herself to CBP officers with a valid U.S. passport that was issued to her by the U.S. Embassy in El Salvador in 1995. The following documents are copies of the photo page of my client’s 1995 U.S. passport and of the application for that very same passport. The photo in the application, which she signed under oath before an official at the U.S. embassy in 1995:

Validly issued passport from 1995.

Validly issued passport from 1995.

Here is the application with the same photo. The quality of the copies are not very good but the photos are the same, even according to an internal memorandum from the U.S. embassy, which stated that it was almost certain that the 1995 passport was issued to my client.

Validly issued passport from 1995.
1995 passport application with identical photo to that in 1995 passport.

1995 passport application with identical photo to that in 1995 passport.

In my client’s sworn statement, she states that her father fraudulently obtained her passport for her. This is not true, as one can see from the fact that Blanca Alfaro signed the passport application and obtained it legally from the U.S. embassy in El Salvador.

The sworn statement also alleges that my client’s date of birth is 12/10/79 and that her real name is Maria Mabel Alfaro. Her real name is Blanca Maria Alfaro and her real date of birth is 12/17/79. 

Lastly, my client’s real sworn statement is corroborated by the records. First, you will see the 1998 sworn confession. Second, you will see the sworn confession given this year to CBP officials when she applied for admission at the U.S. Mexico border with her Texas Birth Certificate, Social Security Card, and NY State Driver License:

unreliable sworn statement

Sworn statement page 2 Sworn Statement page 3 Sworn statement page 4 sworn statement page 5

Fast forward to 2013:

2013 sworn statement

page 2 2013 sworn statement

Because of the absolute absence of any form of procedural due process, my client was literally tortured into signing a confession that resulted in the illegal revocation of her U.S. citizenship by thuggish CBP officials. And because of what happened in 1998 and because the State Department also did not afford my client with any form of procedural due process, my client was illegally exiled from 2005 until March of 2013, where she was then illegally detained for over two weeks.

More to come.