US & World

Young immigrant rights activists detained while trying to enter US

Eight "Dreamers" wearing their school graduation caps and gowns to show their desire to finish school in the U.S., march with linked arms to the U.S. port of entry where they planned to request humanitarian parole, in Nogales, Mexico, Monday, July 22, 2013. U.S. border officials later detained the group.
Samantha Sais

U.S. authorities have detained eight activists who asked to be allowed to re-enter the United States from Mexico on humanitarian grounds in a protest against American immigration policies.

Customs and Border Protection officials detained the activists Monday after they filed applications for humanitarian parole at the Nogales border crossing.

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Customs and Border Protection did not immediately comment.

Benito Miller, an organizer for the National Immigrant Youth Alliance, says the group is probably being taken to a detention center.

Among the group detained are three young activists who recently left the U.S. to organize the protest from Mexico. They were brought to the U.S. illegally as children and have no legal status there even though they grew up in America.

Phoenix-based immigration attorney Magaly Fontes told Fronteras the demonstration is a terrible mistake.

"I don't understand the purpose of trying to challenge the system by leaving. They're actually jeopardizing any relief in the future for their case," said Fontes, adding that there's little chance the activists will be let back into Arizona and that they could be banished from the United States altogether for 10 years.