‘I feel really betrayed’: U.S. Immigration Department employee who posted inmate search on Reddit to avoid deportation was deported
Posted On June 16, 2021
ICE official Jose Martinez is set to be deported to Mexico, after the Department of Homeland Security revoked his status.
The deportation comes days after he was caught on video and accused of using his position to illegally screen inmates from the U.N. Refugee Agency, which helps refugees get legal protection from persecution.
On Thursday, Martinez was charged with illegally entering the U to make a false statement in the United States, according to ICE.ICE officials said Martinez was not in compliance with the terms of his visa and his arrest is being treated as an “emergency.”
In an interview with the San Diego Union-Tribune, Martinez, 51, said he had no intention of using the position to screen inmates for immigration violations.
“I felt very betrayed by the Department because I’m an American citizen, and I’m not allowed to be in a position to do that,” he said.
The San Diego County district attorney’s office declined to prosecute Martinez.
He had been charged with violating the terms and conditions of his immigration visa.
He was released on bail in November.ICE said the department would not provide comment on the matter at this time.
Martinez is not currently eligible for a waiver under President Donald Trump’s executive orders that bar him from traveling to the U.-M.
The executive orders also bar him for two years from reentering the country after he leaves the U-M.ICE spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said the agency had received no complaints about Martinez.
But Eimill said that in the past, ICE had not been able to ensure that its officials were properly vetted.
“We do not and will not tolerate any form of bias or discrimination against our employees,” Eimillo said.