Pizza delivery could lead to Hempstead man’s deportation

Posted: Updated:
HEMPSTEAD -

A Hempstead man's pizza delivery job sent him to the Fort Hamilton Army base in Brooklyn to drop off some food -- where immigration agents detained him.

Pablo Villavicencio is from Ecuador and faces deportation as early as Monday. But his wife and two young daughters are American citizens.

Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents arrested him when guards at the base questioned his New York City-issued ID. 

An Army spokeswoman told The New York Times that if visitors don't have a military identification card, they have to get a pass that requires a background check. Officials say that check on Villavicencio showed he had an active ICE warrant for remaining in the country after missing a voluntary deadline to leave.

"It should be frightening to all of us to think that this administration continues to push for every arm, every agency and every element of the government to turn against immigrant families," says Walter Barrientos, of Make the Road, an immigrants' rights organization.

Make The Road says it's providing legal help to Villavicencio's family. Advocates have also petitioned a judge to let him remain in the United States.

Also on Friday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security in Villavicencio's defense, demanding an investigation into the practices of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.

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