Two brothers from Gaithersburg were deported to their native El Salvador on Wednesday in what their attorney says was the fastest deportation process he has ever seen.
Lizandro Claros Saravia, 19, is a standout soccer player who had secured a scholarship to play college soccer in North Carolina. His brother, Diego, 22, took extra classes to graduate from Quince Orchard High School on time and “has a heart of gold,” a former teacher said.
They entered the country illegally in 2009, however, and although they initially won reprieves from deportation, their efforts to renew those stays were repeatedly denied.
On Friday, the brothers were detained by ICE agents in Baltimore after a regular check-in. Lizandro Claros Saravia told the agents that he was planning to attend college on a scholarship, said Nick Katz, senior manager of legal services at CASA de Maryland, who is representing the pair.
“The ICE agents told me they were deporting the kids because Lizandro got into college, and that showed they intended to stay in the U.S.,” Katz said.
Bourke said that is not how ICE conducts enforcement actions.
“They were issued a final order of removal by an immigration judge in 2012. That’s why they were removed,” Bourke said. The brothers were granted a stay of removal in 2013, but subsequent applications for stays were denied.