US Releases Immigrant Whose Daughter Asked Pope for Help

Saturday, 29 Mar 2014 08:22 PM


  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
A Mexican immigrant to the United States whose daughter asked Pope Francis for help in stopping her father's deportation has been released from custody, but U.S. immigration officials said there was no papal intervention.

Mario Vargas-Lopez was free on bond from a detention center in Louisiana three days after his 10-year-old daughter, Jersey Vargas, delivered her message to the Pope. He was reunited with his family in Los Angeles Friday.

Jersey Vargas was part of a coalition from Southern California that traveled to Vatican City on Wednesday to deliver letters to the Pope from children of undocumented parents, according to "The Tidings," published online by Los Angeles Archbishop Jose H. Gomez.

The girl was able to speak briefly with the Pope and told him, "My father is suffering," according to the publication. The delegation hoped to convince the Pope to discuss immigration reform in his visit with President Barack Obama two days later.

Francis: Who Is Pope Francis? Book Reveals the Man

Vargas-Lopez was arrested in Tennessee in September on a drunk driving charge and served a six month sentence. Upon his release he was detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and held in a Louisiana detention facility until he could appear before a judge for removal proceedings, said Bryan Cox, agency spokesman in New Orleans.

But relatives and friends of the Vargas-Lopez family raised $5,000 to post bond, his lawyer, Alex Galvez, said on Saturday. A judge had approved the bond request several days before the girl met with the Pope, but the money was not available until late this week, Galvez said.

The bond amount was not changed as the result of his daughter asking the Pope to intercede, Cox said. Vargas-Lopez is required to stay in communication with ICE and tell agency officials where he is pending his next court appearance, Cox said. "Him being released on bond in no way translates into special action on his behalf," Cox said. "This was standard procedure."

Galvez agreed that the release was unrelated to the daughter's visit with the Pope. He said her message to the Catholic leader was related to the larger need to improve an immigration system in the United States that separates families.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Convicted Florida Felon Kills His 6 Grandchildren

Friday, 19 Sep 2014 09:55 AM

Authorities say a man who spent time in prison a decade ago for the shooting death of his young son killed six of his gr . . .

Bill Clinton: World's Borders More 'Like Nets Than Walls'

Friday, 19 Sep 2014 06:14 AM

Power is more diffuse in a technologically advanced world, and that means inclusiveness is the only way to battle the wo . . .

Report: Washington Full of Cell Phone Spying Devices

Thursday, 18 Sep 2014 22:12 PM

The Washington, D.C., area is littered with devices that spy on users' cellphones, and one expert thinks they were plant . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved