Cuomo pardons 18 immigrants in face of Trump crackdown on illegal immigration

Local News
This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NEW YORK — More than a dozen immigrants who faced deportation over prior convictions now have a chance of staying in the United States after they were granted pardons by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The 18 recipients of pardons were in the crosshairs of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. President Donald Trump directed the agency to prioritize the deportation of undocumented immigrants with convictions on their records.

“These New Yorkers have proved their rehabilitation, in some cases for decades, but have been unable to gain legal status or fully reenter society due to the stigma of conviction,” Gov. Cuomo said. “While the federal government continues to target immigrants and threatens to tear families apart with deportation, these actions take a critical step toward a more just, more fair and more compassionate New York.”

The pardon is seen as a way to challenge deportation, but won’t necessarily work. While ICE is focusing on undocumented immigrants with criminal records, they are also deporting immigrants who don’t have them.

One recipient, Alexander Shilov, came to the U.S. as a teen. He developed a drug addiction and, while dealing with that, committed a string of misdemeanors. Shilov is now 13 years sober. He’s engaged with two infant children. Shilov also supports his mother and works as a nurse.

He isn’t the only caretaker who received a parson. Freddy Perez, 53, was convicted of criminal sale of a controlled substance in 1993. Now he works as an electrician and cares for his autistic younger brother.

Another recipient, 57-year-old Lorena Borjas, has worked for years as an advocate for transgender and immigrant communities. She currently works as an educator at community health centers across New York City. Borjas hopes to obtain citizenship and continue her advocacy work.

This isn’t the first time Cuomo has granted pardons to immigrants. He gave clemency to an undocumented immigrant from Columbia who worked as a Ground Zero recover worker.

Cuomo also pardoned 39 people who had committed misdemeanors for non-violent crimes when they were 16 or 17 years old and have been crime free for 10 years or more. He also commuted two sentences.

Trending Stories

Connect with PIX11 Online

Connect with PIX11 Online

Don't Miss

Latest Video

Temperatures in the mid-60s this week as spring-like weather returns

Community mourns 10-year-old boy who died after being found unconscious in NYCHA building

Calls grow for Cuomo to quit from top New York lawmakers

Celebrating movies with social meaning

The latest on the effort to vaccinate NYC against COVID-19

Senate approves President Biden’s COVID-19 relief plan, headed back to House for final approval

The countdown to spring and a warmer week continues

NJ teachers, staff eligible for COVID-19 vaccine earlier than expected

City, leaders take vaccines into Co-Op City megasite

@PIX11News on Twitter