Middletown father of 5 facing deportation hopes for help

Posted: Updated:
MIDDLETOWN -

A Middletown father of five is facing deportation to Mexico, and his attorney is urgently pleading for help.

Toribio Cervantes, 62, first moved to the U.S. in 1990. According to lawyer Jennifer Echevarria, Cervantes was working at a factory in Goshen when it was raided by ICE in 1993, and 40 undocumented immigrants were swept up, including him.

The government then granted him a voluntary year of stay, but he says he was never contacted again. Then back in May, Cervantes was pulled over for driving with a broken taillight, and two months after that, ICE agents arrested Cervantes at his home on Liberty Street early one morning. He is being held in a Bergen County jail cell as he faces deportation.

Echevarria is now hoping to get Cervantes' 1994 deportation order revoked.

"He has a clean record. He's a hardworking man with a good family, and he's going to be ripped away from his family," Echevarria says. "It's a long shot, so that's why we’re asking people to get involved, politicians, anyone who's interested."

Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney has shown an interest in Cervantes' case, which Echevarria calls exceptional.

"We're not telling anyone to feel sorry for the undocumented people who come here and commit crimes. But these people are not committing crimes -- they're loved, they're beloved in the community," Echevarria says.

Cervantes' attorney says she has reached out many times to ICE to ask about a deportation date, but has never received a response.

News 12 contacted ICE about the case, but a spokesperson wouldn't answer when asked when Cervantes might be deported.

News 12 reached out to the family of Toribio Cervantes, but they did not want to speak on camera due to language barriers and fears of exposing other undocumented immigrants.

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