A Guatemalan father of five and revered member of his community has been detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) within weeks after he invited ICE members, among others, to a community meeting organized to address people’s rising concerns about immigration, according to reports.
Roland Gramajo, 40, organized a community meeting in southwest Houston, Texas, in August, as President Donald Trump’s orders for ICE raids riled up communities across the country, the Houston Chronicle reported.
On Thursday, he was arrested near his home and is facing deportation, the New York Times reported. It’s unclear if ICE members accepted the invitation and officially attended the community meeting. Some attendees reported that they’d seen some men, seemingly out of place, take photos of Gramajo, which some now believe were ICE agents “secretly” attending the meeting, the Times reported.
Gramajo first came to the U.S. in 1994 and outstayed his tourist visa. In 1998, he pled guilty to burglary charges. His daughter says it was a practical joke with a friend, who eventually wanted to drop the charges, that spun out of control. The case went ahead anyway, and he was deported in 2004.