Looking at the DHS press releases, I noticed this one issued on July 26 by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement: “ERO Los Angeles Removes Armenian With Several Earlier Removals.”
ERO stands for Enforcement and Removal Operations.
As a writer, I wouldn’t have quoted initials known only to insiders or used some form of the word “delete” five times in the title and main sentence, as ICE did in this case, but my curiosity was piqued by the unusual country of origin (Armenia) and this question: How many times has he been imprisoned for repeated illegal entries? He would have three. A second illegal entry can often lead to a prison sentence if the government is committed enough to it, and a third could, and should, lead to a longer prison sentence.
The short answer is that I couldn’t find any indication that he was prosecuted for any of his illegal entries, but I did find that this man, Vigen Patatanyan, now 59, spent the most of the past 22 years living illegally in the United States. and occupying a lot of government attention. His PACER records (plural) number eight, as he had two cases in federal district court plus two appeals in the Ninth Circuit plus four bankruptcy cases; the total number of documents in these cases, a measure of the time he used in government, was 238. These consist of petitions, decisions, reports and orders, most occupying several pages. I have not researched his record, if any, in state court, but know that in addition to his years in and out of court cases, he was also busy in immigration court.
Patatanyan, in short, made extensive use of what lawyers call “due process.” There was also no indication in the ICE press release on its four bankruptcy files. In the one I looked at, he cheated on nine different banks, incurred debts of about $159,000 that he couldn’t pay, and managed to repay them (with court permission) at the level of 4,617 $. This equates to about three cents on the dollar.
Maybe if he had been thrown in jail after being caught for the second time as an illegal entrant, he wouldn’t have racked up all those bills and created so much work for the federal government, both at the DHS and in the justice system. It would have cost the taxpayers some money upfront, but it might have saved a lot in the long run.
The other thing I learned from the press release is the spelling, if not the pronunciation, of Armenia’s main airport. This is Zvartnots International Airport, in Yerevan; that the name of the landing field was included in the press release, but any mention of his eight court cases is of interest in itself.