Attorney tries to stop deportation of Metro Transit rider questioned about his immigration status

He's scheduled to fly back to Mexico Tuesday.
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A Metro Transit officer questioned a passenger last month about his immigration status. Now an attorney is trying to keep the rider from being deported.

The incident was captured on video and it now has more than a million views on Facebook. The video shows an officer – who has since quit his job – asking a male passenger on a Blue Line train if he's "here illegally." Which Metro Transit publicly addressed afterwards, noting that's not their officers' business.

Two days later, Ariel Vences-Lopez, 23, was taken into Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody – even though Metro Transit says it did not contact immigration officials.

Danielle Robinson Briand, Vences-Lopez's attorney, tells GoMN he's scheduled to be flown back to Mexico on Tuesday. Apparently the planes that take people back fly every two weeks.

But she's filed a motion to reopen the man's case. If the motion is granted, Vences-Lopez will get to stay while his case is reevaluated.

The attorney says he's currently at Sherburne County Jail, which is one of the county facilities that houses immigration detainees for ICE.

Robinson Briand told the Star Tribune Vences-Lopez came to the U.S. when he was 13. He had been working for a roofing company and did not have family in the area.

CNN recently did a whole article on how deportation works. You can check that out here.

The source also looked at the number of people deported from the U.S. each month. In December, more than 11,000 people were removed. In January and February, more than 10,000 were.

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