NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A Guatemalan teenager living in Connecticut has been granted asylum in the U.S. after having been detained by immigration authorities for more than three months.
The New Haven Register reports a U.S. Immigration Court judge in Boston granted asylum on Monday to Mario Aguilar Castanon, an 18-year-old student at Wilbur Cross High School in New Haven.
Lawyers for Aguilar say they're waiting to see if Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials appeal the ruling and hope Aguilar will be released from detention whether or not there is an appeal.
Aguilar came to the U.S. from Guatemala in 2018 to flee threats from gangs that tried to recruit him. Teachers and friends at his high school and state and city officials have rallied to protest his detention.
Federal immigration officials took Aguilar into custody in September as he entered Milford Superior Court, where he was scheduled to appear to face charges related to a car crash.
Police say he hit a parked car while driving without a license and no insurance. Aguilar also was charged with driving under the influence, but his lawyers expect him to be cleared of that allegation because there was no sobriety test. His case remains pending.