DENVER (AP) — A mother of two children who sought sanctuary at a Quaker meeting house in Denver to avoid U.S. immigration authorities has been granted a temporary stay from deportation.
Ingrid Encalada Latorre, a 33-year-old native of Peru, and her attorney announced Saturday that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials agreed not to pursue deportation through Aug. 7.
Through a translator, Latorre said she looked forward to going home with her children, 8 and 17 months, who were both born in the U.S.
"I'm happy," she said with a big smile.
Her attorney, Jeff Joseph, said the reprieve will allow Latorre to continue her appeal of a 2010 case in which she pleaded guilty to a felony charge of possessing falsified or stolen identification papers that she used to get work.
Latorre is seeking to withdraw the plea, contending she received deficient legal counsel. She is scheduled for another court hearing July 7.
"Ingrid has a due process right to have her day in court and unfortunately that right was squandered by previous attorneys," Joseph said. "This is a situation where had those attorneys not messed up Ingrid's case, we probably wouldn't be here today."
Latorre, who sought refuge in December to avoid ICE, said her case is about more than just her and her family.
"We are human beings," she said during a press briefing. "I will continue to organize until our full humanity, contributions and place in this country are recognized."
Arturo Hernandez-Garcia and Jeanette Vizguerra — two other people who recently were granted two-year stays from deportation — were among those present for the announcement Saturday.