Sure, Pablo Villavicencio Calderon is an illegal alien who ignored a final deportation order. And he has been working as a pizza deliveryman without a valid driver’s license or identification. But those facts did not matter to U.S. District Court Judge Paul Crotty when he ruled Tuesday that being a good guy was enough cause to excuse the Ecuadoran native from imminent deportation.
“Although he stayed in the United States unlawfully and is currently subject to a final order of removal, he has otherwise been a model citizen,” wrote Crotty. An ironic choice of words considering Crotty had expressed concern that – if deported – Villavicencio application to become a U.S. citizen would not be completed.
“What’s the harm to the country and to immigration policy by allowing him to finish the process?” he asked Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Cordaro.
The highly-publicized case was triggered by Villavicencio’s June detention by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after he failed to provide proper identification while delivering pizza at an Army base in Brooklyn, New York and a subsequent background check showed a final deportation order from 2010.
Perhaps the sympathetic image of the habitual lawbreaker perpetuated by open border activists and the media had an impact as Crotty’s disdain for immigration enforcement authorities was clearly on display.
Judge Crotty suggested that Villavicencio failed to comply with the deportation order due to poor legal representation.
“Maybe he’s just encountering good counsel for the first time … What is the danger to the community for a man who has committed no crimes?” Crotty reportedly asked during case arguments.
Besides, Crotty seemed to assert, the government was wrong for enforcing U.S. immigration law.
“The powerful are doing what they want and the poor are suffering what they must … Why do you want to enforce this order? It makes no difference in terms of the larger issues facing the country,” Crotty preached to Cordaro.
Crotty showed his anti-enforcement stripes when he issued a 25-page preliminary injunction on June 27 that prevented Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) Director Scott Lloyd from putting in place a policy that required he personally approve the release of any illegal immigrant children from Health and Human Services custody.
He called Lloyd actions as an “arbitrary and capricious” assertion of power which was “at the zenith of impermissible agency actions.”