1. Skip to navigation
  2. Skip to content
  3. Skip to secondary content

WednesdayFebruary 23, 2011

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

Read More

Key Government Website GSA Launches Mobile Version in Spanish

The U.S. General Services Administration launched today a mobile version of GobiernoUSA.gov, the official portal of the U.S. government in Spanish with access to a bounty of government websites, programs and services. As part of the federal government’s ongoing effort to make information more accessible to all Americans, the public can now use mobile devices to more easily search for government information on such popular topics as employment, government benefits, food safety and education.

According to a recent Pew Internet and American Life Project report, Hispanics are among the most active users of the mobile Web. They take advantage of a much greater range of their phones’ features, and are more inclined to use their mobile phones to access the Internet.

The mobile-friendly version of GobiernoUSA.gov complements the English language USA.gov’s mobile version, which launched last July. The mobile version of GobiernoUSA.gov allows users to access a wide range of government programs and services on mobile devices without complicated graphics and lengthy text that can bog down mobile Web browsers. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

STUDY:  Minorities and Women Make Best Hedge Fund Managers

Want an annualized return of 7.5% over three years or 9.1% over the last five? Then make sure your hedge fund is run by a woman or minority. 

A study by Hedge Fund Research found that investment hedge funds run by women and minorities out performed other fund managers – it didn’t appear to matter whether it was during an economic downturn or not.

For example, in 2008 during the depths of the financial crisis, hedge funds on average lost 20% while funds majority-owned by women or minorities lost only 5.41%. 

Women and minorities own funds continue to represent a small fraction of hedge fund managers but their results are getting noticed. 

Read more at Financial Alterantives →

Two Pennsylvania Men Convicted of Hispanic Hate Killing Sentenced to Nine Yrs in Prison & $550 Fine

Two Pennsylvania Men Convicted of Hispanic Hate Killing Sentenced to Nine Yrs in Prison & $550 Fine

Photo: Luis Ramirez on Life support

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Brandon Piekarsky, 19, and Derrick Donchak, 21, both of Shenandoah, Pa., were sentenced today to nine years in prison for the fatal beating of Luis Ramirez, the Justice Department announced.

Piekarsky and Donchak were ordered to serve three years of supervised release and pay $550 to the Pennsylvania victim compensation fund, as well as the special assessments for each count. Donchak was also sentenced to an additional 30 months for obstruction, which will be served concurrently.

On Oct. 14 2010, a federal jury in the Middle District of Pennsylvania found both defendants guilty of a felony violation of the federal Fair Housing Act for fatally beating Luis Ramirez because he was Latino and because they did not want Latinos living in Shenandoah. In addition, the jury found that Donchak conspired to, and did in fact, obstruct justice during the investigation of this crime.

According to the evidence presented at trial, on July 12, 2008, the defendants came upon Ramirez in a park after leaving a community festival. The defendants and several of their friends, some of whom testified during the trial, attacked Ramirez. During the course of the beating, the defendants and their friends yelled racial epithets in which they repeatedly referred to Ramirez in derogatory racial terms and told him “This is Shenandoah. This is America. Go back to Mexico.” According to testimony, Donchak beat Ramirez while holding a thick piece of metal identified at trial as a “fist pack.” After another of their friends punched Ramirez in the face, causing him to fall back and hit his head on the ground, Piekarsky kicked Ramirez in the head as he lay unconscious and prone on the ground. After Piekarsky kicked Ramirez, he told a bystander who was married to a Latino man to “tell your Mexican friends to get out of Shenandoah or you will be lying next to him.”

After the fight concluded, Ramirez was air-lifted to Geisinger Regional Medical Center, where he died of massive head injuries.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Rep. David Rivera’s Relationship with Politcal Consultant Raising Campaign Finance Questions

While state and local officials look into the personal finances of freshman Rep. David Rivera (R-FL) as well as his campaign accounts, they have also begun looking at his relationship with political consultant Esther Nuhfer, who has received $817,000 in fees from Rivera’s campaigns and affiliated political committees since 2006.

Nuhfer was already under investigation for having received $150,000 from the Miami-Dade Republican Party just before Election Day, but never provided them with invoices detailing how the money was being spent.

The Miami Herald has reported that Rivera paid Nuhfer $250,000—$150,000 of it referred to as “bonus” money – for a State Senate campaign he never finished when he instead decided to run for Congress. Many speculate that he never intended to finish the campaign, and are demanding to know exactly where and how the campaign money was spent.

When the Herald

The following is what the Herald reported.

In campaign reports, Nuhfer is described as a fundraising consultant. But in a written response to questions from The Herald, Rivera listed some 41 different functions Nuhfer performed for the Senate campaign, including: “general consulting,” “political consulting,” “collateral material development,” “coalitions building,” “consultant liaison,” and “travel coordination, school site outreach program, web-site development, GOP auxiliary organizations liaison, precinct analysis, et cetera.”

The “bonus” payments to Nuhfer, Rivera said, were a “contractually-obligated expenditure for the campaign having successfully reached the fundraising bonus threshold,” but he failed to provide a copy of said contract.

Read more at TPM →

Four Day Immigration Sweep Nets 58 Undocumented Aliens in Mississippi

During a four-day targeted enforcement operation in and around Jackson that ended Monday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers arrested 58 individuals, including convicted criminal aliens, immigration fugitives and known gang members and affiliates.

Many of the criminal aliens taken into custody had prior convictions for serious or violent crimes, such as contributing to the delinquency of a minor, sexual assault, possessing and selling dangerous drugs, drunken driving, sexual contact and battery, and assault.  Eleven of the individuals ICE officers took into custody were immigration fugitives, aliens with outstanding orders of deportation who had failed to leave the country.

The arrests took place in the following Mississippi cities: Brandon, Pearl, Ridgeland, Canton, Carthage, Crystal Springs, Hazlehurst and Jackson.

Of those arrested, there were 57 men and one woman. Forty are from Mexico, nine are from Guatemala, four are from Honduras, two are from Panama, one is from El Salvador, one is from Peru, and one is from Costa Rica. They range in age from 17 to 71.

Seven of those arrested had been previously deported. A conviction for felony re-entry carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison.

This week’s enforcement action was spearheaded by ICE’s fugitive operations program, which is responsible for locating, arresting and removing at-large criminal aliens and immigration fugitives - aliens who have ignored final orders of deportation handed down by the nation’s immigration courts. ICE’s fugitive operations teams give top priority to cases involving aliens who pose a threat to national security and public safety, including members of transnational street gangs and child sex offenders.

Largely as a result of these initiatives, ICE last year removed more than 392,800 aliens from the United States; of that number, more than 195,700 were aliens with criminal convictions.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Few Minority Students Studying Abroad, Educators Want to Change This

Educators are pushing for more students of color to study abroad, and are helping students work out the finances to take part in what many call a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

According to educators, foreign study is crucial to student development, but very few minority students take part in such programs, despite their presence at universities.

Blacks make up 4.2 percent of study-abroad students, yet comprise about 13.5 percent of the overall college population. Latinos are a little better, as they make up roughly 6 percent of the abroad students while making up 12 percent of the college population. Asian-Americans are doing well in this context, as they represent 7.3 percent of those abroad and 6.8 percent overall. Still, 81 percent of students participating in foreign study programs are white, while being around 63 percent of higher education students.

Augustana College researcher Mark Salisbury believes that better marketing towards minorities could help, and says instead of showing the program as an necessary cultural experiences, schools could stress it as a path toward self-reliance and independent thinking.”

In a study to be published next month by Research in Higher Education, Salisbury, along with two other authors, state, “Minority students don’t need to seek out cross-cultural experiences by traveling to another country because in most cases — especially as students at majority white postsecondary institutions — they already interact across cultural differences every day.”

Since 2001, low-income Pell Grant recipients have been provided with study-abroad funds by way of the Congressionally funded Gilman Scholarship. Last year, according to the Institute of International Education about 55 percent of Gilman scholars were minorities.

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) created a bill attempting to create the Sen. Paul Simon Study Abroad Foundation, an $80 million entity that would award grants to both students and institutions. Simon is a late Illinois legislator that pushed for the increase in funding for foreign study.

In 2009, while re-introducing the Sen. Simon Foundation bill, Sen. Durbin said, “Expanding study abroad should be a national priority. The future of the country depends on globally literate citizens who are at ease in the world.”

Read more at Asssociated Press →

U.S. Customs Seize Fake iPads in Puerto Rico

U.S. Customs Seize Fake iPads in Puerto Rico

Photo: Fake iPads

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Just as the Apple-loving world is anxiously awaiting the official unveiling of iPad2 on March 2nd, counterfeiters are trying to get the American consumer to buy their fake iPad.  Case in point - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at Port of Ponce in Puerto Rico seized a parcel with 15 boxes of an item called iRobot.  The problem is there is no Apple product named iRobot, nor can any other product carry the ‘i’ name to it without being an official Apple designation.

The parcel, arriving from China, was falsely declared as digital photo frames, in hopes no one would notice they were fake iPads. 

The false declaration is considered a fraudulent attempt to import the merchandise, since the unit value and description on the invoice were altered to circumvent CBP regulations.

“To facilitate legitimate trade and maintain confidence in the local commercial environment requires that we enforce intellectual property right (IPR) laws. CBP focuses our enforcement efforts on detecting IPR violations. In general, we protect computer programs, video games, toy designs and other intellectual creations against unauthorized reproductions, derivations, distribution or display,” said Marcelino Borges, director of field operations for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Infringements to intellectual property rights cause significant loses to businesses who legally attempt to sell their brands in a free market economy.

Importers violating intellectual property rights may be subject to civil penalties and/or criminal prosecution.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Try Something Truly Mexican in the Heart of Chicago - A Chapulin Quesadilla (VIDEO)

Tepatulco, is a Mexican-joint in the heart of Lincoln Park,one of Chicago’s upscale neighborhoods, Tepatulcois is not your average taco place. 

Artful execution, intense and unusual flavors, and an elegant presentation, sets this place apart from neighboring burrito joints, specialized in providing massive burritos to massive drunken clubbers. 

That, and the fact that the menu offers dishes with Chapulines, or crickets, a staple of Mexican cuisine - makes it all the more unique.

Don’t let it bug you. They’re not too bad. Somebody described their peculiar tang as “Chicken Flavored Peanuts.”

A pound of these tasty bugs can cost around $30, a small prize to pay for the amount of fun you can have serving these Cricket quesadillas at your next party! Chef Franz can show you how to properly eat bugs in a scrumptious quesadilla.

Read more by HS News Staff →

In 2010, 190 Mexico City Youth Took Their Lives After Being Bullied

In 2010, 190 Mexico City Youth Took Their Lives After Being Bullied

Photo: Bullying in Mexico City

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

A foundation out of Mexico City has stated that at least 190 youths from the city took their own lives in 2010.

Mexico’s Movement Foundation (MF) director Trixia Valle told those attending Mexico’s Citizen Council for Public Security and Law Enforcement that the majority of these young people took their lives after being bullied at school. Many do it after coming home from school often hanging themselves or slicing their veins.

Valle added that the increase in cyber bullying has made it hard to avoid the abuse even after leaving school since kids often go online after school and the torment continues on social networking sites.

Investigations by Mexico City’s legislation noted that “bullying-led suicide” by young people is most commonly seen among junior high (middle school) students after abuse has continued from elementary students.

Valle has called on schools to provide students with the help of psychologists on school grounds to help these troubled young people, and added that while suicide is often the outcome of the bullying, criminal behavior can also be caused by continued harassment.

Read more at The Breaking News Wire →

Computerization of USCIS Immigration Files Taking Longer Than Expected

Behind schedule and over budget, the plan for the computerization of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ files has clearly not gone according to plan.

According to online records, USCIS has moved the plan’s deadline three times and changed the expected budget just as many times. And Thursday, USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas admitted, “We are not on the timetable that was originally devised.” So far, $631.1 million has been spent on the project named Transformation, and an estimated $2.4 billion will be spent in total.

Once complete, Transformation should have USCIS’s documentation online by 2016, with operational costs covering it until 2022.

If the program can remain on track, by this fall, immigrants filing for work permits, visa extensions, and other common applications will be able to set –up online accounts and file their application(s) electronically.

Mayorkas said most of the delay was caused by arguments over which applications should go online first. It was originally planned that citizenship applications would go up first, but in 2009 Mayorkas decided that the initial documents that immigrants need to file at the beginning of the process should go up first.

Further setbacks occurred when Accenture LLP protested that USCIS awarded a major contract to IBM, not them, and since getting the $200 million contract, IBM has had problems with the program’s pilot tests. The pilot for filing adoption paperwork for example, has seen issues, as IBM has failed to meet the government’s website accessibility requirements for the visually impaired.

So while Transformation will ultimately help speed up and organize the application process through USCIS, it still has a long way to go.

Read more at New York Daily News →

Newfound Peace in Brazilian Favelas Sets New Precedent in Popular Music (VIDEO)

The traditionally angry, violence exalting, drug encouraging lyrics, have been replaced by songs of hope, and calls for peace in Brazil’s favelas.

The funk of Rio evolved from the Miami bass and freestyle , developing eventually an identity of its own and a symbol of the crudest realities of the favelas; rhythms reminiscent of machine gun fire, and lyrics revering crime and the sexual objectification of women.

In the last year, efforts of the Units of Pacification Police (UPP) have resulted in the return of territories once dominated by drug dealers, to the common folk. As a result, the dirty favela funk, has been replaced by tunes of peace, unity and hope.

“Life is not so beautiful here, but there can be art and culture within the slum,” sings MC 2B. In his rap, DJ Ball sends the message: “Favela free, I pray peace. We want to see our children grow up and not taking gunfire.”

MC Henrico, an artist who had a cousin murdered after getting involved with drug dealers from Morro do Borel, chose to not use music as a channel for revenge and seeking criminal empathy. The artist defends the new policing model and sends an important message in his music: “The example we set for our kids is a weapon and a bandit. I still dream of watching a child armed with a book.”

We just hope an example is set, and we get to see the day when Anti-narco-corridos become the big craze.


Read more by HS News Staff →

Florida Man Arrested For Sexually Assaulting Roommate’s Chihuahua

Florida Man Arrested For Sexually Assaulting Roommate’s Chihuahua

Photo: Alleged animal abuser, Tomas Bautista

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Animal cruelty charges have been filed against a Florida man who allegedly sexually assaulted his roommate’s tiny pet dog.

Thursday, Tomas Bautista, 40, was arrested after his drunken night led to the sick violation of his roommate’s chihuahua said Broward County sheriff’s department in Oakland Park, Florida.

Clemente Velasquez, the roommate, said he arrived home to find Bautista in a drunken stupor and “told him to go to bed,” said police.

The drunk Bautista instead went outside to the back yard with his roommate’s three-year-old Chihuahua mix, Mimi, in tow.

Police said Velasquez heard Mimi yelp a few minutes later, and ran outside with a flashlight.

He found Mimi bleeding and Bautista “passed out with his pants down.”

Velasquez took the black and white Chihuahua Coral Springs Animal Hospital to be treated after he called authorities.

“She’s not happy like she normally is,” said Velasquez. “She is now just lying down on the sofa.”

Police allege that Bautista told them he used his finger to violate the dog.

The charge of animal cruelty is only a third-degree felony, and Florida does not have a law that specifically bans sex with animals.

Read more at New York Daily News →

U.S. Urges Cuba to Release All Political Prisoner on One-Yr Anniv. of Orlando Tamayo’s Death

U.S. Urges Cuba to Release All Political Prisoner  on One-Yr Anniv. of Orlando Tamayo’s Death

Photo: Orlando Tamayo-Cuban Political Prisoner

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Today marks one year since the death of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, a Cuban political prisoner who died following an eleven-week hunger strike calling for the release of his fellow political prisoners in Cuba.

He was a relatively unknown political prisoner but when he died many young Cubans saw him as the symbol of Fidel Castros failed regime.  Tamayo was a 35 year old laborer who was arrested in 2003 and sentenced to 3 years in prison for “defiance”. 

His death also opened the door for more hunger striking amongst political prisoners calling attention to their plight.

Today on the island, the Cuban government is ready to disband any protests that may start and are guarding Tamayo’s mothers house and his relatives to make sure they don’t start an uprising.  The family is also not allowed to visit his gravesite today.

The U.S. has issued visas to his family so that they may travel to U.S. as political refugees. 

The U.S. government issued a statement on the matter, in which they noted:

“We also deplore the continued intimidation and harassment by the Cuban government of activists and their family members, including Zapata’s mother Reina Luisa Tamayo, who are working to promote human rights on the island.”

“We join with both the international and Cuban community in urging the Cuban government to immediately and unconditionally release all remaining political prisoners.”


Read more by HS News Staff →

Did Somebody say Brainchiladas? Mexico Takes a (Machete) Stab at Zombie Flicks (VIDEO)

“Los Infectados” a new Mexican take on the usual Zombiepocalypse plot will hit theaters soon.

“Los Infectados” was directed by Alejandro G. Alegre and stars Marcos Duarte, Claudia Nin, Renato de Triana, Zoe Cuellar, and Guillermo Jair.  Expect crowbars, blood, brains, FUBAR situations, FUBAR looking people, shotguns, machetes and tequila. And mustaches.


Read more by HS News Staff →

Gates Foundation, Univision and Other Partners Stressing Importance of Education for Latinos

Univision today unveiled the second phase of its highly successful, multi-platform education initiative, Es El Momento (The Moment is Now). The initiative’s second phase highlights the importance of children having role models in their lives, encouraging parents to teach by example and instill in their children the importance of education, as the key to their success.

“We believe that education is the key to opportunity,” said Melinda Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “Our partnership with Univision is critical to spurring the conversation about the need for all students to graduate high school prepared for college and completion of a degree beyond high school.”
United States Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan stated, “We are absolutely committed to reducing dropout rates and boosting student achievement among Hispanic students. Our collaboration with Univision and other public/private partnerships is critical to our success.”

“We look forward to continuing to work with The second phase of Es El Momento presents a series of motivational Public Service Announcements (PSAs) featuring leading Hispanics, including Indy Car series race car driver and engineer, Milka Duno; composer, lyricist and Tony Award-winner, Lin-Manuel Miranda; NASA astronaut and engineer, José Hernández; and award-winning novelist, Sandra Cisneros.”

According to some of the latest research, Hispanic students across the country continue to lag behind in graduation rates compared to their non-Hispanic peers. Furthermore, a large gap remains between Latino students and their non-Latino counterparts in key areas of academic achievement – from standardized test scores and high school graduation, to college registration and completion.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Former Brazilian President Lula and one of his Ministers Sued in Brazil

Federal prosecutors in Brazil have filed a lawsuit against former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and former Social Security Minister Amir Lando.

Prosecutor Luciana Loureiro Oliveira is accusing the two men of mishandling public funds to arrange for more than 10 million letters to be sent to retirees, informing them about low-interest payroll loans from Banco BMG.

Oliveira said the letters, sent in 2004, served no public interest and were sent 10 months after the law was passed allowing the loans, the news agency said.

“At the time of dispatch of letters, the only ‘new thing’ was the financial institution recently contracted and able to make the loans, namely, Banco BMG,” the suit says, according to Agencia Brasil.

Prosecutors believe the letters were sent merely as a means of self-promotion, praising the law and at the same time benefiting Banco BMG, the only bank approved to provide the loans.  The suit seeks to have Lula and former Social Security Minister Amir Lando foot the bill for the amount spent on the letters, about $5.7 million (9.5 million Brazilian reais).

Lula’s office said the former president is traveling and will not provide a comment until his legal team has reviewed the lawsuit.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Thousands Come Out to Protest in Texas Against 60 Proposed Anti-Immigration Bills

Hundreds of immigrants, students, advocates and military members come out in protest at the Texas state capital, against the various bills being proposed on immigration.  The theme of the protest rally was “Texas Can do Better.” 

Currently Texas has about 60 pieces of immigration–related legislation that has been filed in the state legislature.  The bills ranges in scope from mandating that school districts report immigration status of children to making it a felony to hire an undocumented individual to denying birth certificates to children of illegal aliens. 

One of the more outrageous bills recently filed in Texas is by Republican Rep. Lois Kolkhorst that would mandate law enforcement turn detained illegal aliens over to a U.S. Senators office or congressmen’s office.

With Texas Republicans now controlling the house many feel this is the best chance the state has ever had to pass anti-immigrant legislation, so they are piling it on.

Various Democratic lawmakers were quick to point out that protesters were not illegal but registered Texas voters who see this issue (immigration) as bigger “than that” and have taken personal affront to the tone of the debate.  Many feel immigrants are being made the scapegoat for the state’s fiscal problems and are being used to divert attention to bigger issues confronting the state. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

New Mexico Putting up A Fight Against Fake Chiles

NM Rep. Andy Nuñez, an independent from the chile capital of Hatch is pushing a bill that seeks to penalize those grocery stores, restaurants, roadside stands and anybody who falsely claims to sell New Mexico chiles.

Much like Florida oranges, New Mexico chile is a premium product that deserves protection, alleges expert witness Charlie Marquez, a representative of the New Mexico Chile Association.

“We see cans of chile that say ‘Hatch,’ and that product does not come from the United States,” Marquez said.

Members of the House Agriculture and Water Resources Committee endorsed Nunez’s bill, though more than a few were skeptical.

Rep. Don Tripp, R-Socorro, said he appreciated the intent of seeking transparency in the labeling and advertising of New Mexico chile, but, questioned if the proposed law would be a plausible “thing to audit or police.”

Rep. Joseph Cervantes, D-Las Cruces, said Nunez’s bill mentioned only one type of chile pepper - the “fruit from Capsicum annuum, New Mexican-type,” and wondered if it should also include other New Mexico-grown peppers, like jalapenos.

Under the bill, the regents of New Mexico State University would administer and enforce the chile advertising act through the state Department of Agriculture.

NMSU has not taken a position on the bill.




Read more by HS News Staff →

Indiana Gov in Tough Spot on Pending Immigration Bill- a No-Win Issue

Indiana Gov in Tough Spot on Pending Immigration Bill- a No-Win Issue

Photo: Mitch Daniels

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

No wonder Governor Mitch Daniels hasn’t said if he will sign Senate Bill 590 or not.

Support Senate Bill 590, which would require state and local law enforcement to enforce federal immigration laws, and Daniels will be going against business and university leaders who oppose the bill.

Oppose the bill, and he’s standing against key forces in the Republican Party, including tea party activists whose support he will need if he runs for president in 2012. With an eye to the White House, his pending decision is drawing nationwide interest.

Daniels speaks fluent Spanish. His office maintains a Spanish-language website and he’s held a news conference in Spanish. When pressed on his views during a stop in Lafayette last week, Daniels said he’s “pro-immigration.”
But he also said the nation’s laws “need to be enforced.” “I don’t understand the argument that they should not,” Daniels said, “as long as it doesn’t interfere with the enforcement of our own laws.”

“The only thing that unites America are our ideals and our language. I am pro-immigration, but I have said to immigrants often in their own language—Spanish—that to me the terms of the arrangement ought to be obey the law, provide for yourself and speak and learn the language. Or make sure your children do,” he said. “And, you know, I always get agreement from new Americans about that.”

“The bill’s been changing and probably will some more,” he said. “So I’m going to wait and see if there’s a final version and what it looks like before I make that decision” Said Daniels.

Read more at Indy Star →

98 Service Members Become U.S. Citizens in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 4 have Purple Hearts

98 Service Members Become U.S. Citizens in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 4 have Purple Hearts

Photo: Military Servicemen become citizens

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Three officers from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) district office in Bangkok, Thailand, traveled to Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan to naturalize 98 soldiers, sailors and Marines during a ceremony on Jan. 29.

While USCIS officers regularly travel to military installations worldwide to provide immigration services to members of the armed forces, this is only the second time they have been to Kandahar Airfield, which is close to the front lines.

Four of the new citizens have received the Purple Heart for wounds they received while deployed in Iraq or Afghanistan.  New citizens have served multiple deployments in Afghanistan or Iraq; in fact, several are on their third deployment, and one – Army Sgt. Jaime Adame, a native of Mexico,has been deployed four times.

Since 2004, when the first naturalization ceremony was held overseas, USCIS has naturalized 885 members of the U.S. armed forces deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Close Up & Personal Interview with Miss Universe Mexico’s Ximena Navarrete (VIDEO)

In the interview (translated by Barbara Trujillo-Gomez) Mexico’s Ximena Navarrete talks about what it means for her to win the crown, the importance and responsibility that come with the title and the meaning it has to the people of Mexico.

Read more by HS News Staff →

WednesdayFebruary 23, 2011