Politics

SLIDESHOW: Father-son reunite at LAX after federal agents separated them

Unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant Hermelindo Che Coc hugs his son Jefferson, 6, after the pair were reunited at LAX following a 48-day separation forced by a change in federal immigration policy.
Unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant Hermelindo Che Coc hugs his son Jefferson, 6, after the pair were reunited at LAX following a 48-day separation forced by a change in federal immigration policy.
Sharon McNary/KPCC
Unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant Hermelindo Che Coc hugs his son Jefferson, 6, after the pair were reunited at LAX following a 48-day separation forced by a change in federal immigration policy.
Jefferson Jacinto Che Pop arrives with an escort of airline employees to meet his father on July 14, 2018, after they were separated for 48 days. The boy, age 6, had been held at a shelter in the Bronx, New York, since late May when he and his father, Hermelindo Che Coc, were separated.
Sharon McNary/KPCC
Unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant Hermelindo Che Coc hugs his son Jefferson, 6, after the pair were reunited at LAX following a 48-day separation forced by a change in federal immigration policy.
Hermelindo Che Coc, an unauthorized immigrant from Guatemala, greets his son Jefferson at Los Angeles International Airport on July 14, 2018. The pair were apprehended in Texas and separated for 48 days under the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy.
Sharon McNary/KPCC
Unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant Hermelindo Che Coc hugs his son Jefferson, 6, after the pair were reunited at LAX following a 48-day separation forced by a change in federal immigration policy.
Hermelindo Che Coc, 31, from Guatemala, awaits his son's arrival at LAX after they had been separated by U.S. immigration agents for 48 days. Che Coc was released in late June, but his six-year-old son was held until July 14, 2018 in a shelter in the Bronx, New York.
Sharon McNary/KPCC
Unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant Hermelindo Che Coc hugs his son Jefferson, 6, after the pair were reunited at LAX following a 48-day separation forced by a change in federal immigration policy.
Hermelindo Che Coc carries his 6-year-old son Jefferson to an airport lounge after the pair were reunited at LAX following a forced separation for 48 days. Che Coc was held in Texas while his son was taken to a shelter in the Bronx, New York.
Sharon McNary/KPCC


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An unauthorized Guatemalan immigrant father and son, separated by federal agents at the Mexican border in late May, are finally back together.

Forty-eight days after Hermelindo Che Coc last saw his six-year-old son, Jefferson, the pair was reunited at Los Angeles International Airport Saturday night.

Immigration officers took Jefferson away one day after father and son were detained in Texas. The father was released in late June.  But Jefferson has been held at a shelter in the Bronx, New York.

Following a public outcry and the intervention of immigration rights lawyers and a federal judge, Jefferson was put on a flight alone to L.A.

 His dad, short and stocky, crushed the slight boy in his arms and sobbed.

A federal judge gave officials until July 26 to reunite the children with their families.

But the only date that matters to Hermelinda Che Coc is July 20, when Jefferson has his seventh birthday at home in Azusa with family.