A 30-year-old woman is facing deportation after a panel of judges in the Mountain States ruled that she is too old to qualify for U.S. citizenship under the Child Citizenship Act of 2000. That law was passed to modify rules for child citizenship among foreign nationals adopted by U.S. citizens. The 2000 act of Congress allows certain foreign-born, biological or adopted children of citizens to become U.S. citizens automatically.
The 30-year-old woman was adopted by a U.S. citizen before that Child Citizen Act of 2000 became effective. The woman was adopted from an orphanage in India when she was only 3-months-old. The adoptive mother passed away when the girl was 8-years-old, but had never filed citizenship paperwork for the young girl before the mother passed away.
In 2007, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement brought the woman into an immigration court for a removal proceeding. The woman had been convicted of a felony forgery charge and was jailed in 2007 on a probation violation. ICE sought removal of the woman after the agency determined that the forgery conviction was an aggravated felony and qualified for priority treatment under immigration enforcement policy.
The woman is not a U.S. citizen, despite the 2000 law that generally makes the citizenship process in similar types of cases automatic. An immigration judge determined that the woman is too old to qualify for automatic citizenship under the 2000 law, having entered the country long before the immigration law was passed. The immigration judge ruled that the woman is legally an "alien" under immigration law.
In the next post, this blog will continue discussing the woman's plight and what plans the woman is working on in her continuing fight to defend against deportation.
Source: Associated Press via Deseret News, "Utah woman adopted as baby faces deportation to India, despite no connections there," P. Solomon Banda, May 28, 2012