On March 13, 2017, ICE detained a member of RUSA LGBT community, Denis Davydov, while he was returning from his trip from the US Virgin Islands.
According to ICE, Denis was detained due to a visa violation because he applied for political asylum after his visa has expired, which is a common practice for asylum seekers. We believe that this detention is unlawful and is a result of the current administration’s anti-immigrant policies.
Denis has complied with all USCIS guidelines and filed for an affirmative asylum within a 1-year deadline. He was awaiting his asylum interview, had a valid employment authorization and A-number, and had no criminal record.
Initially, we were optimistic that this case will be resolved quickly. Even though Denis had to spend his 30th birthday in jail, where he received more than 50 birthday cards from our community, we were hopeful that he would be released promptly. Unfortunately, Denis has been detained for more than a month as of now. Yesterday, his second court hearing was adjourned without any date set.
This unjust detention puts Denis’s health at risk. Denis is a person living with HIV and he needs access to the appropriate health services. We worry that Denis will be subjected to harassment and violence in detention as one of the inmates has already used homophobic slurs towards Denis.
We are outraged that our member has been detained for more than a month and are very worried about the outcome of his case. We would like the wider community to become aware of his story. Please share widely.
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All information is shared with Denis’s full permission.
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