ICE Has Been Trying to Deport a Pakistani Man for Seven Years, But He Won't Get on the Plane

Categories: Immigration

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Sohail Raza Khan would rather die than go back to Pakistan. He's made this abundantly clear to U.S. immigration officials, begging them to send him to federal prison, or just let him rot in the ICE detention facility where he's spent the past several years. Anything but deportation.

According to a 2009 opinion by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Khan fled Pakistan in 1985 after being arrested and tortured by police. He applied for asylum under the U.N.'s Convention Against Torture, but his request was denied by a local immigration judge, who signed a deportation order on May 21, 2007.

His appeal, based on the judge's refusal to allow testimony from Khan's sister backing up his claim that the Pakistani government had been keeping tabs on him and would likely torture him again upon his return, was denied, first by the Board of Immigration Appeals, then by the 5th Circuit.

Still, Khan has refused to leave. When ICE agents took him to DFW International Airport and attempted to put him on a commercial flight to Pakistan on January 3, 2012, he refused to board and was ultimately taken back to the ICE detention center.

Over the weekend, ICE tried again. On Friday, they transferred him from the ICE facility in Haskell to the ICE building on Stemmons Freeway, where he spent the weekend. Agents arrived on Monday to take him to the airport.

They got Khan out the door of the ICE building but not much further. As soon as they were outside, he began struggling, refusing to go any further. The officers wrestled him to the ground, then pulled him back inside.

For the moment at least, ICE has given up on getting Khan on the plane. Instead, federal prosecutors have charged him with impeding his removal from the United States.

With that, Khan might be allowed to linger in federal custody for another four years, the maximum allowable penalty under the law.

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

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33 comments
bagsmontana
bagsmontana

More tax dollars being spent on a useless cause.They can make me pay taxes but they can't make him leave?

Is this what the president was talking about when he mentioned immigration reform in the SOTU speech?

mcdallas
mcdallas

I suggest that ICE talk to the folks at DEA.  Surely they have something to calm the nerves.  At the very least, get a bottle of Benadryl.

roo_ster
roo_ster

Hog tie him, strap him in a coach seat and say "Buh-bye."

ruddski
ruddski

Why doesn't the US try to relocate him to another Muslim country, like England, or France?

dingo
dingo

He would probably change his mind once they dropped the Cricket Television Network feed from the cable lineup at the ICE detention facility.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

And in the meantime, hundreds of thousands of people enter across our southern border and nothing appears to be done about it.


That being said, it appears that this man has more than a credible fear that his life is at risk if he is returned to Pakistan, since living in jail in America is preferable to living in Pakistan.

rubberduky
rubberduky

I cant figure out what is so hard about taking a handcuffed and shackled immigrant onto a plane. Pick his ass up and carry him on board instead of making him walk. Police do this all the time with suspects that won't comply to standing up. ICE has melted......

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

Has Pakistan requested their citizen back?  Has anyone at ICE asked the Pakistani authorities what his (criminal) status is?  Is he a fugitive?  What is his crime?

What status do the Human Rights organizations in Pakistan have him listed as?

ruddski
ruddski

If he can prove he's illiterate, unskilled and liable to be a burden on the US, he still won't get in unless he can guarantee that he has at least 15 equally needy family members ready to relocate to the US as well.

It's the only way we're going to conquer financial inequality.

whocareswhatithink
whocareswhatithink

Keep treating him this way, eventually he will get on the plane join the Taliban and his next return wont be so friendly.


(Of course, I say this not knowing his story, if he was captured and tortured because he committed a crime or has committed any crime in the US or was just a stand up guy from 87-07- but with DO reporting, we will never know)

tdkisok
tdkisok

What a bunch of assholes. The guy wants to stay here and be a productive member of out society. Let him stay. 

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

He's been in this country for 30 years.  Grant him the damn asylum!

wcvemail
wcvemail

@mcdallas 
"We're gonna strap them kids in give 'em a little bit o' Benadryl
In a cherry coke we're goin' to Oklahoma" (James McMurtry)

ruddski
ruddski

"And in the meantime, hundreds of thousands of people enter across our southern border and nothing appears to be done about it."

Not true, were going to grant them amnesty, politicians from both sides are demanding it.

bstewart1987
bstewart1987

@tdkisok How do you know he wants to be productive member of society here? It doesn't even say what he has been doing since he has been here. Maybe he was tortured in Pakistan for being a leader of a terrorist group? Just saying.

wcvemail
wcvemail

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz

No. He's entitled to find another country to go to, I'm sure, but refusing to obey the law for decades doesn't entitle one to ultimately escape the law completely. Even our U.S. citizens eventually have to face justice, as witness the NY mafiosi who were very recently arrested for the decades-old Lufthansa heist.

ruddski
ruddski

Illegal immigration dropped because of the US recession.

It will pick up when the jobs are there, and the coming amnesty will bring a fresh wave across the border larger than we've seen in the past.

America, were told, can't possibly deport millions of people, America can't stop the human tide, so what will the argument be in five, ten, 15 years post-Amnesty II?

JFPO
JFPO

That just eats away at your little white heart, doesn't it?

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@ruddski  

Hmmm . . . Mexicans dominate that system? Why, it's almost as if we share a border, or something . . . 

ruddski
ruddski

Hey credible, did you know we allow legal immigration, and that Mexicans dominate that system?

If you're worried that too few people of one national origin will crash the system, simply allow more in legally.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@ruddski  

Finally we understand the conservative rationale behind their irrational drive to crash the economy.

ruddski
ruddski

JFPO, the roots of modern leftism are in Marxism. Sorry.

If you support unprecedented corruption of the American immigration, then one has to ask why. Could it be... Race based?

Sure looks that way. Do you know any Indians, Vietnamese, Arabs, Iranians, British, German, italian *legal* immigrants that voice support for amnesty or any form of reward for illegal immigration?

It's all about race alright, and la raza knows it, and my guess is, you don't even know any illegals.

If I'm a dog-whistle racist, why the hell would I support policies that can only benefit Latino immigrants? Why would you support policy that lowers immigrant earning power?

JFPO
JFPO

No, "leftists" as you see them are not communists, 1960s guy. We're smart enough to interpret your dog whistling.

ruddski
ruddski

"That just eats away at your little white heart, doesn't it?"

Is it true that almost every argument from the left eventually becomes one of class or race because leftist DNA is basically communist?

tdkisok
tdkisok

@bstewart1987


No, I just don't look at every person with brown skin from the Middle East as being a terrorist.

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