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US immigration office halts Filipina’s deportation after public outcry

Karla Gaerlan, baby Christopher, U.S. Army Specialist Thad Schmierer. Photo by rciriacruz

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) cancelled the deportation order for Karla Gaerlan, an undocumented immigrant from the Philippines, following hundreds of emails and phone calls from community members and a protest/press conference this morning.

ICE had scheduled Karla’s deportation this Sunday – Father’s Day.

Thad Schmierer, Karla’s husband, is a member of the U.S. Army.  Karla and Thad have a nine-month-old baby boy.

Also, earlier today, eight members of the House of Representatives joined immigrant rights organizations calling for a halt to deportations while immigration reform moves through Congress.


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  • Vertumnus

    There are so many unanswered questions. Why did INS took special attention for her to be deported? Doesn’t matter the circumstances, if a foreign national marries an American citizen, she becomes his dependent. There are circumstances where INS insist on the foreigner going home but only after all the proper paper works are filed for her to be given an immigrant status. There are TNT’s who over stayed their visitors or student visas but eventually ended up marrying American citizens. They get to stay and wait for their green cards and work status. There’s more to this story than what was written. On a side note, the baby looks real cute!

    • bok

      The only thing i can think of is that she had no choice but to lie on the information she provided for her dossier to be able to stay in the first place. SHe was tracked down. The INS are experts in tracking down overstaying aliens. There’s no way of escaping them.

      Publicity is obviously working for her since she has an american husband (if she’s married..) who’s also a member of the military. Its “un-american” under the Obama administration to kick this filipina out of the country. Bad for the morale of other american servicemen with “alien” partners.

      • Vertumnus

        That’s what I don’t understand. Why lie when she’s marrying an American citizen. Doesn’t matter if you over stayed your visa for 1 week or 5 years, INS will over look that as long as the marriage is legal and real.
        Makes me think this was a set up marriage but ended up becoming real when INS found out. Not the first time fake marriage happened.

      • bok

        She was probably afraid in the first place to be kicked out. Sometimes people panic because of circumstances. Immigration laws in the states are still ruthless and extremely bureaucratic. But immigration lawyers have found ways to bend it…. (with the right price..)

      • bedouintrip

        maybe she was previously married in the Philippines making her application complicated.

    • yew_tan

      The Army takes care of their own.

    • boybakal

      Marrying a US citizen does not automatically gives one a legal status or American citizenship.
      She should be petitioned by the American citizen husband.

      A person petitioned should be of good moral character and no charges or criminal case has been filed against the person.
      At the case at bar….the woman was charged of domestic violence.

      That’s why she is being deported.

      • Vertumnus

        No not American citizenship just permanent resident. A petitioned spouse must wait 3 years and be married for that amount of time before applying for citizenship.

        Domestic violence might not be necessarily the reason for deportation. There are varying degrees of domestic violence. Violence resulting in assault could be considered a felony crime which could be grounds for denial of petition and subsequent deportation.

    • mfdo

      True pinoy style, you should demand she be given US residency because the baby is cute :D :D .. don’t talk of others, you break the law, you pay the price .. so get out .. than comparing who is worse than who .. she is not dependant anymore when she walked out on her husband ..

      • Vertumnus

        I’ll adopt the baby if they don’t want it! So, was she married before and left her husband or she left her American husband and now demands to be allowed to stay in the US. Having a US born baby does not allow the mother legal residency. She’s still a Filipino citizen even if her baby is American. This story is very short on details and the way they portray this couple like innocent husband and wife.

  • randyaltarejos

    Minsan di ko maisip na marami pala sa ating mga kababayan ang magagaling ang mga katwiran at ganun na lang sila kung mang hamak ng ibang tao. Kung talagang magagaling kayo at marami kayong mga magagandang ideya bakit di kayo tumulong upang umayos ang ating ekonomiya at umunlad ang ating bayan? Puro lang pala kayo dakdak.

  • darsmith

    All are equal as far as complying with the law is concerned, no ifs, no buts. What gave her the right to be given special preference over the others who were found in violation of the immigration law and subsequently deported?

    • mfdo

      because she is a Filipina and all logics fly out of the window, when a countryman is affected ? truth be told, a safe assumption would be, she established other connections, so she has no intention to stay with the husband and time to look for other ‘relatives’ ..no wonder many a guy says marrying a filipina is like giving her a ticket to get US residency .. and while not all do, many do it .. enough said ..

  • sigena

    TNT ANO BA YAN. nakahiya ng storya pa rin ito

  • boybakal

    The law maybe harsh but it is the law.

  • Matty099

    WHy was she illegal?

  • boybakal

    ICE is hard on illegals.
    But once they come to the Philippines, they will thaw.
    This ICE will be Kaskas for Halo halo.

  • anu12345

    I thought they are giving some leeway to members of the military

  • Daimler Altschuh

    Russia halts extradition of Snowden to the USA following outcry from Russian people.



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