Customs and Border Protection | Michigan Radio
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Customs and Border Protection

shoulder of a us customs and border protection officer
Glenn Fawcett / U.S. Customs and Border Protection / Flickr

UPDATE: Alireza Yazdani Esfidajani has now been deported, according his attorneys. This story has also been updated with statements from U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Michigan State University.

An incoming Ph.D. student at Michigan State University faces deportation after being stopped by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at Detroit Metro Airport.

The student's name is Alireza Yazdani Esfidajani. He's originally from Iran. His attorney says he has a valid visa and permission from MSU to study at the university.

someone writing on a ballot
Michael Dorausch / Flickr, http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

 

Today on Stateside, we talk to Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin (D-Holly) about what she’s seen during a trip to the U.S.—Mexico border. Plus, a look at what it takes to turn a petition drive into a question on the ballot in Michigan. 

Rep. Elissa Slotkin and her deputy chief of staff Danielle Most talk to two children at a CBP holding facility in Donna, Texas.
Office of Rep. Elissa Slotkin

 

A bipartisan group of U.S. representatives on Friday visited sites along the U.S. Mexico border. Among them was Democratic Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin, who represents Michigan’s 8th district. Slotkin says her goal for this trip was to “understand the stress on the situation” at the border, and to try to find bipartisan agreement on how to fix what she describes as a broken system. 

titikul_b / Adobe Stock

It’s not Camila Trefftz’s job to track this, but she tries to give the best estimates she can: so far this year, she’s says she's probably seen about 12 cases of kids being temporarily placed in Michigan after they were separated from their parents at the southern border.

But if you count the kids separated from relatives overall, not just parents? Then that number skyrockets, Trefftz says. Dozens, definitely. Maybe close to 100? She's not sure. The youngest they’ve seen was four months old. Another is younger than two, she says.

Wikimedia Commons

Arrests of undocumented immigrants have jumped over the last two years in the Detroit sector of the northern U.S. border.

According to U.S. Border Patrol statistics, there were  1,930 arrests in FY 2018 (October 1st through September 30).  That's more than two and one half times the number from two years earlier and the three years before that. About two thirds of those arrested in FY 2018 were from Mexico.

Counterfeit sports championship rings
U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Pro athletes: If you're going to put a ring on it, make sure you've got the real thing.

Customs and Border Protection officials say they seized $680,000 worth of counterfeit sports championship rings at Detroit Metropolitan Airport last April.

The rings were found in a shipment that originated on a flight from China.

They had the names and logos of several pro sports teams, including the Oakland Raiders, the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys.

The Ambassador Bridge's owner wants to turn an old neighborhood at the foot of the bridge into a secondary truck inspection plaza.
flickr user Alan Levine / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

There has been plenty of legal wrangling over Ambassador Bridge owner Matty Moroun’s desire to block the new Gordie Howe Bridge and build a second bridge right next to the Ambassador.

Across the Detroit River, the city of Windsor has taken its complaint with Moroun all the way up to Canada’s Supreme Court.

Dept of Homeland Security

Three federal border agents who died during the Prohibition era in Michigan will be honored Thursday.

Border Patrol Inspectors Franklin Wood and Earl Roberts were killed by bootleggers near Detroit in the late 1920’s. Inspector Charles Inch was killed by a train as he pursued two people trying to enter illegally from Canada in 1932.

user: John Hardwick / Flickr Creative Commons

For the last week, a bus that stops in southwest Detroit has been stopped by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The riders are asked for identification, and those that cannot produce the proper paperwork are detained. 

Michigan United, a civil rights group, is calling these actions by CBP intimidation, harassment, and even racial profiling. 

http://buildthedricnow.com

The $1.1 trillion  budget that President Obama signed this week did not include money for a customs plaza in Detroit.

The customs plaza is needed for the New International Trade Crossing, the bridge to be built between Windsor and Detroit.

A Muslim civil rights group says federal agents are wrongly detaining and questioning Muslim-Americans coming into the U-S.

The Michigan Council on American-Islamic Relations lays out those accusations in a federal lawsuit filed this week.

They’re suing on behalf of four Muslim U-S citizens. All say they were subject to “invasive religious questioning” when they tried to re-enter the country from Canada.

Shareef Akeel is a lawyer for the plaintiffs. He says Muslims are clearly being singled out for this type of "persecution," and that’s illegal.