He un-undocumented himself by adopting the identity of a dead child and using it to obtain fraudulent ID papers. The feds caught him and asked for a removal order that would have barred the guy from re-entering the U.S. in the future.
But how could the judge enforce a law so cruel?
Cobian, 37, built a typical American life for himself and his family based on a false name. Now his deception is uprooting the entire family, including his U.S.-born son and daughter. The grade-school-age children are U.S. citizens and speak little Spanish, said David Shomloo, Cobian’s attorney…
Cobian entered the United States illegally in 1989. He later purchased the birth certificate of Jose Luis Mendoza, a California boy who had died as a child, and assumed the little boy’s name. In 1996, he used the name to apply for a Social Security card and later used the false identity to obtain a U.S. passport as well as legal residency status for his wife, also a Mexican immigrant. His wife was unaware that her status was based on fraudulent documents. When the couple’s children were born, they also took on the last name of Mendoza…
Because the children are American, it’s possible for them to petition for their parents to return to the United States after they become adults.
The judge made it clear that Cobian’s crimes — especially his use of a false identity to obtain legal residency status for his wife — were serious. He said deportation would have been the expected outcome.
But he said that he had the legal ability to exercise his discretion in the case and had decided to do so, describing the decision as a “close call.” The judge said he wanted to bring finality to the case.
“I do wish you the best, sir,” Bennett told Cobian.
Parse this for me: How does it bring “finality” to the case when refusing to grant a deportation order only makes it more likely that Cobian will try to return and the feds will have to deal with him again in some capacity?