Texas woman stuck in Mexico after allegedly being coerced to deny citizenship
Brenda Vázquez was born in Texas. On her way back from Mexico, though, she told border patrol agents she was in fact born in Mexico. Now she is not allowed to return to the U.S. Her attorney, however, says the young woman only said what she said after hours of interrogation, and now he is requesting a judge to allow her to return.
“If Customs and Border Protection (CBP) believes a person has false documents, then they should criminally prosecute and allow a person access to a defense attorney, not keep them in a room for seven hours,” says Jaime Diez, Vázquez attorney. “My client was crying, exhausted, she felt there was nothing she could do except sign and say she was born in Mexico and not the U.S.”
Diez says he understands the government’s rigorous checks have to do with the region’s history. In the 90s, the government found some midwives, or “parteras” who had delivered babies decades before in the Brownsville area had fraudulently sold around 15 thousand birth certificates.
Unfortunately, says Diez, Latinos born in Brownsville to midwives have paid the price. Diez knows Hispanics who have served in the military or in law enforcement who have had to fight for a passport, since they were born to midwives in this area of Texas.
Read the full story at NBC Latino