Sara Beltran Hernandez, from El Salvador is claiming asylum in the US as she reports that a gang leader and gang members who are believed to have killed people in the past have sent her death threats in El Salvador. According to her affidavit in support of her asylum claim, Hernandez suffered serious physical and psychological domestic violence, and was sexually abused.
According to her lawyer, Hernandez collapsed in the detention centre on 10 February 2017 and staff then took her to Huguley Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas. On 13 February, she told her lawyers that she had been diagnosed with a brain tumour that required surgery. On 18 February, ICE officials permitted Hernandez to call her relatives for the first time since being taken to the hospital eight days earlier. She said that she had begun to have convulsions and nose bleeding, head pain, trouble thinking clearly, and that she had still not received surgery. On 22 February, staff at Huguley Hospital informed her that she would have surgery on 27 February and transferred her back to the detention centre.
Detention should only be used by immigration officials as a last resort and justified on a case by case basis. Parole should be granted for humanitarian reasons where the person does not present a threat to public safety and poses no flight risk.
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