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Advocates: Girl, 11, faces deportation alone to El Salvador

April 12, 2019

HOUSTON (AP) — Family members and advocates for an 11-year-old Salvadoran girl living in Houston say they’re fighting to prevent her deportation due to an apparent paperwork error.

The Houston Chronicle reports that 11-year-old Laura Maradiaga was issued a removal order after allegedly missing a court appearance in March. But Laura’s attorney, Silvia Mintz, blames a communication error that led to the missed court appearance, possibly due to a court translator. Mintz says she’s asked the court to reopen the case.

Laura, her sister, and her mother, Dona Alvarado, crossed the U.S.-Mexico border in October and sought asylum. The order means Laura could be deported without her sister and mother and forced to return to a country they said they fled because a relative testified against a local gang member.

The Executive Office for Immigration Review says it is reviewing the girl’s case.

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Information from: Houston Chronicle, http://www.houstonchronicle.com