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Attorney: Asylum Requests on the Rise

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Posted: Jun 26, 2014 4:11 PM

Updated: Jun 30, 2014 3:02 PM

WESLACO - The wave of illegal immigrants continues to push through the Rio Grande Valley. Now, many of those people are petitioning for asylum.

Immigration Attorney Carlos Garcia said most of his clients seeking asylum are from Central America.

"About 75 percent of our clients are Central Americans," Garcia said.

Garcia said the U.S. Department of State's Country Reports on Human Rights Practices are used to determine an immigrant's eligibility for asylum.

Human rights reports for El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras show unlawful killings, cruel treatment by security forces and restrictions on freedom of speech and press.

"We see people fleeing, because they can not send their children to school without having the fear that their child is not going to return back home. We talk to people on a daily basis about getting extorted or getting kidnapped," Garcia said.

Garcia said the reports can help an immigrant's case or expedite the removal proceedings.

"Government attorneys and the immigration advocates submit these reports to the immigration judge so the judge can consider what the State Department says is going on in a particular country," Garcia said.

Garcia said the reports are not updated regularly. He said they won't explain the recent surge of illegal immigrants making their way into the U.S.

"It is not going to explain why all these children are coming to the United States. That information we get basically from talking to the people who are making that journey," Garcia said.

Garcia thinks the reports do not help in most cases.

Topics: u.s. department of state, human rights, reports, asylum, carlos garcia, rio grande valley, immigration, attorney

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