CONCORD, N.H. – An immigrant from Brazil who lives in New Hampshire and faces deportation Nov. 5 is fighting for his case to be heard, saying federal officials aren't honoring a nearly 15-year-old agreement allowing him to stay in the United States.
Renato Filippi, 58, of Nashua, said he entered the U.S. through Mexico in 2002 with the help of smugglers. He was arrested, but said U.S. government authorities recruited him to serve as a confidential informant on the people who assisted with his entry. He said he was promised he could stay in the U.S. permanently. Now that he faces deportation, he says he is facing death threats from Brazil and fears going back.
"We always thought of the United States as being something different, like a better country with a better justice system where we would be safe," his daughter, Renata Filippi, 31, said Wednesday. "Now, it's like our life is turned upside down. ... The only thing I would hope and I would wish for is that they finally allow him to stay, and just say, 'OK, that's our part of the deal.'"
Shawn Neudauer, a spokesman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, declined to comment Wednesday.
Filippi said he worked inside a Texas detention facility for nearly a year. He later was relocated to New Hampshire and was required to report periodically to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. He was able to get a Social Security card and a driver's license and found work. He brought his wife and daughter to New Hampshire.
During a routine appointment with immigration authorities in September, he learned he had to leave. Filippi's lawyer is pursuing appeals in the 1st Circuit Court in Boston and the Board of Immigration Appeals. A federal judge in New Hampshire recently declined to act on the case, saying he lacks jurisdiction.