Rep. Butterfield calls out ICE for controversial arrest of Samuel Oliver-Bruno
A U.S. Congressman called out U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for its role in a controversial arrest in Durham.
Rep. G. K. Butterfield (D-North Carolina) appeared on MSNBC on Sunday morning to talk about the arrest of Samuel Oliver-Bruno.
ICE detained and arrested Oliver-Bruno on Friday.
Butterfield said ICE lured Oliver-Bruno out of Durham, where he was staying at his church.
Oliver-Bruno left his church for a scheduled appointment at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
USCIS asked him to come in person to provide fingerprints, a necessary step in his petition to get deferred deportation.
Once Oliver-Bruno left his sanctuary, ICE detained him.
"This is another example of ICE going to the extremes in their work. This man posed no threat to the community," Butterfield said. "Shame on ICE for doing this."
Oliver-Bruno is 47 years old. He's from Mexico, but has been living in the USA for many years.
ICE released a statement calling Oliver-Bruno a convicted criminal. However, Butterfield and immigration advocates say he has no criminal history. They say the only crime he has ever committed is coming to America without first going through the proper channels.
ICE later admitted Oliver-Bruno's only criminal history is a misdemeanor conviction in 2014 for illegally entering the country.
"What ICE has done is absolutely reprehensible," Butterfield said. "Mr. Bruno was a law-abiding person. The offense he is charged with is being in the country illegally."
Support for Oliver-Bruno
Members of CityWell United Methodist Church met Sunday to talk about how they can continue to support Oliver-Bruno.
"When I saw my mom's face--heartbroken," Oliver-Bruno's son, Daniel Oliver-Perez, said. "My dad would have been with us sitting in the front."
On Saturday, the church family held a vigil in honor of Oliver-Bruno. Jose Chicas was at that vigil.
"He has a wife who's ill who needs him. And he has a son who's a student," Chicas said, describing Oliver-Bruno's situation.
On Friday, 27 people were arrested while protesting the arrest of Oliver-Bruno.