Woman miscarries during deportation

Immigrant rights advocates rallied in New York and Philadelphia on Feb. 14 to protest the treatment of a Chinese woman, three months pregnant, who miscarried twins while immigration authorities tried to deport her from JFK airport in New York on Feb. 7. Zhenxing Jiang has lived in Philadelphia for 11 years; she and her husband have two US-born sons, ages four and seven.

Jiang reported on Feb. 7 for a regularly scheduled check-in with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Philadelphia. According to her attorney, Richard Bortnick of Philadelphia, ICE officers pushed Jiang into a minivan, bruised her and bumped her abdomen against the backseat and drove her to JFK airport. He said the officers stopped to eat lunch but gave the pregnant woman nothing to eat during her eight-hour ordeal and cursed her when she cried and told them she was in pain. By the time they reached the airport, Jiang was suffering severe abdominal cramps and begging for help in a public waiting area. Someone finally called an ambulance, and at the hospital a ultrasound showed that Jiang’s twin fetuses had died. (AP, Feb. 15; World Journal, Feb. 11; NYT, Feb. 14)

On Feb. 14, ICE spokespreson Dean Boyd called the accusations “categorically false.” Boyd said the agency had interviewed the officers and concluded that “contrary to the claims of her attorney, she was not pushed or bruised,” ridiculed or denied food. But “as a matter of protocol,” he said, the claims have been referred to the agency’s Office of Professional Responsibility. (NYT, Feb. 15)

From Immigration News Briefs, Feb. 18

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