Why This Is Important
Blanca Cardenas was deported under questionable circumstances. Bank of America wrongfully foreclosed on her home and while she was defending the home police arrested her. Authorities discovered that she was was an undocumented immigrant and quickly deported her to Mexico. Blanca has not only lost her home, she has lost her family.
None of Blanca's local and state representatives could prevent the deportation so we call on President Obama to bring her back.GOAL: 200 signatures
Below is our letter:
Dear President Obama,
Earlier this month a mother of two children and decade long resident of California was deported from the country under questionable circumstances. After many failed attempts to stop her deportation by her local and state representatives, I am writing to you, Mr. President, as our last hope to bring this good citizen back.
Blanca, like thousands of immigrants who come to this country every year, legally or otherwise, saw the same hope and opportunity that our foremothers and forefathers saw when they first dreamed of coming to this great nation. Blanca came to find a better life than the one her family had back in Mexico and for a long time, she lived the American dream.
Blanca is 37 years old and is married to an American citizen, she has two children who are natural born Americans. Her oldest child is 14 years old, and her youngest is only 17 months. She has been in this country for over 15 years.
Blanca’s life in this country has been similar to any American’s. She found a wonderful loving husband, Gerardo Quinones, and together they raise their family to be proud Americans. They celebrate all the holidays any American celebrates, including Thanksgiving and Independence Day. She is a true American, perhaps not on paper, but as demonstrated through her good heart and actions.
Yet Blanca’s American dream has been turned upside down due to the fraudulent and illegal foreclosure on her home by Bank of America. Mr. President, this is a story we have all heard over and over again. Blanca needed to lower her monthly payment on her home and asked the bank for a loan modification. The bank gave her and her husband the run around but not before letting them know that they needed to miss a payment on their mortgage in order to qualify for the loan modification. Like millions of other Americans who have been tricked into this dual track scheme, her home was on the fast track to foreclosure - and without her knowledge.
Blanca is a fighter, however. She refused to let the bank take her home and fought back by any means possible. Her and her husband recently filed for bankruptcy, a common way that many Americans have been able to at least postpone the sale of their home while they continue to work with the banks. Despite the bankruptcy litigation, which still continues today, Bank of America sold her home.
One day an investor knocked on the door of Blanca’s North Hollywood home and demanded that she and her family move out immediately. Blanca refused and the investor declared a citizens arrest. Los Angeles Police Department officers arrested Blanca on site.
While Blanca was in custody, authorities discovered that she had not filed proper immigration paperwork and that she was undocumented. She was turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. ICE had her immediately deported, despite receiving paperwork from her attorney that should have at least delayed the deportation until her case was given a more thorough review.
Blanca’s family has been torn apart because of Bank of America’s illegal practices. While it is true that Blanca came over here without documentation, Blanca has been nothing more than a good citizen, striving to live up to American ideals, with the hope of raising her children to become great American citizens.
Her baby cries for her mother and feels resentments toward Blanca because she feels that Blanca has chosen to abandon her. Blanca’s husband must work and care for the child as a single parent. Mr. President, you know personally the struggle of a single parent, trying to raise a child alone. You know her husbands struggle and you know the struggle of being a child with only one parent to raise you.
Blanca only wanted a better life and we should feel honored that someone would risk everything to come to our country to learn to live by our values. Blanca and her family need your help. You are her last hope. Please intervene on her behalf. Please stop the banks from destroying families. Please stop these quick deportations that split families up between borders that are not easy to cross and that are hundreds or thousands of miles away. Mexico is not Blanca’s true home, the United States of America is. This is where she belongs. Blanca is an American.
I stand behind Blanca and so does the community.
Thank, Mr. President. I know you will do the right thing.
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OCCUPY FIGHTS FORECLOSURES AND DEFENDS DETAINED MOTHER TO COUNCIL AND LAPD Occupy LA’s Foreclosure Defense Group Responds to a Mother Facing Deportation after Foreclosure FiascoMarch 01, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WHO: Occupy Fights Foreclosures joins the Cardenas Family and Community Leaders in City Meetings
WHAT: Protest wrongful detainment of Blanca Cardenas— a mother with a young child— to LAPD & Council
WHEN: Tuesday, February 28, 2012 at 9:30am
WHERE: City Hall 200 N. Spring Street room 340 and Police Commission Boardroom 100 W. 1st Street
WHY: LAPD made a wrongful arrest during unlawful eviction on a fraudulently foreclosed home; Mother wrongfully detained without bail on ICE hold.
LOS ANGELES – Tuesday morning, Activists from Occupy Fights Foreclosures (OFF) will rush between two City meetings downtown to petition Los Angeles City Council and the LAPD Police Commission to intervene in the case of Blanca Cardenas, a North Hollywood homeowner whose home activists believe was illegally foreclosed.
Mrs. Cardenas— a mother of two U.S.-born children, faces possible deportation due to an allegedly fraudulent foreclosure, illegal eviction, and law enforcement mishap.
Now the Federal Government has Mrs. Cardenas— a non-priority undocumented homeowner with no criminal background— detained without bail on an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) hold pending a hearing. Despite the fact that Cardenas’ youngest child is only 17 months old, her husband is a U.S. citizen, she has been in this country for more than 15 years, she has been married for 9 years, and has owned a home for 8 years.
“It’s been devastating since they took her,” said Gerardo Quinones, Blanca’s husband. “Our youngest daughter just cries for her mama.”
Last Wednesday, LAPD arrested Mrs. Cardenas while she defended her family home. The family disputes the foreclosures and eviction due to fraudulent paperwork filed by the banks.
Although the exact circumstances leading up to Mrs. Cardenas’ detention and ICE hold remains unclear, it appears the inciting event ties to a man who recently paid money for the property. Apparently he initiated a citizen’s arrest and LAPD took Mrs. Cardenas into custody, even though the Sheriff’s Department has jurisdiction over evictions.
Following the arrest, authorities at the Van Nuys jail apparently investigate Mrs. Cardenas’ immigration status and turned her information over to immigration authorities. Allegedly, a cell phone video recording of the arrested prompted this investigation into Cardenas’ immigration status.
“We stand with Mrs. Cardenas and her family to fight for Blanca’s release,” said Carlos Marroquin, a homeowner advocate and Occupy activist, “We believe the foreclosure has been done in a wrongful way.”
Occupy activists rally in support of the Cardenas family less than two weeks after the SF County Recorder released an audit of foreclosures which shows legal violations and questionable activities on nearly all of the files. The audit shows that an estimated 99% of the foreclosures involve questionable activity, 84% of foreclosures involve clear violation of the law, and over 66% involve four or more violations from all the files they reviewed.
Occupy activists call for a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions until a full investigation is complete. Occupy Fights Foreclosures will join other Occupy groups throughout the state on March 12 outside County Recorders’ offices to ask for similar audit of foreclosure procedures in Los Angeles and other Counties.
“Until such an investigation is complete,” Marroquin said, “We call on the State of California to institute an indefinite moratorium on all foreclosures and foreclosure-related evictions.”
Marroquin also points out San Francisco County Recorder Phil Ting’s statement regarding the audit report: “Many of these actions, if not all of these actions, render many of these foreclosures invalid.”
Invalid foreclosures can cause many troubles for investors of these properties.
“An investor who buys a home that banks fraudulently foreclosed upon, also risks being implicated in the housing crime,” states Marroquin, “Buying stolen property doesn’t mean the property belongs to the highest bidder”.
Occupy Fights Foreclosure— an official subcommittee of Occupy LA – joins Hermandad Mexicana Panorama City, Buen Hogar Foundation, Familia De Blanca Cardenas, Dec 12 Coalition, and other community leaders.
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* This event and press release have not been approved by any Occupy group’s General Assembly but Occupy Fights Foreclosure approved its creation.
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