DREAMer to Be Released After 6 Weeks in ICE Custody

(CNN) — Daniel Ramirez Medina, whose immigration case drew widespread attention, will be released Wednesday, said his legal team.

Immigration Judge John Odell granted bond for Ramirez, who has been in custody since early February, a spokesperson from Immigration and Customs Enforcement said.

Ramirez, 23, testified for about 40 minutes during an immigration bond hearing on Tuesday and is expected to post $15,000 bond sometime before his release on Wednesday, said Manny Rivera, the spokesman for his legal team.

Ramirez’ case rattled immigrant rights groups, which have been increasingly nervous about President Donald Trump’s immigration policy including its impact on DREAMers.

The Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act, or DREAM Act, was first introduced in 2001 and had been reintroduced in Congress several times, but failed to pass. The bill aimed to create a pathway to citizenship for undocumented children who grew up in the United States.

DREAMers are undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children and can apply to stay in the country as long as they pass background checks. The program established by Obama’s executive order in 2012 is called the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA.

Ramirez came to the US from Mexico with his parents illegally when he was 7. He had twice been granted permission to temporarily live and work in the country under DACA, his lawyers said.

Ramirez was arrested February 10 in Washington during an ICE raid that initially targeted his father.

“Daniel has been in detention for almost two months,” said Theodore J. Boutrous, Jr., a member of Ramirez’ legal team. “We are relieved that he will be released and look forward to arguing the merits of this case in federal court.”

Conflicting portrayals of the man

Since his arrest, conflicting accounts have emerged.

While his lawyers call Ramirez a “law abiding” young father, federal immigration officials have an entirely different label: “self-admitted gang member.”

The government alleges Ramirez told immigration agents he is a gang member, an affiliation that generally disqualifies undocumented immigrants from gaining DACA protection.

But Ramirez’ lawyers filed a lawsuit in federal court, saying he is not a gang member and that immigration agents never had any legal cause to take him to a holding facility where it was alleged to have made the disputed confession.

Meanwhile, advocates hope that Ramirez’ arrest does not indicate that the Department of Homeland Security is proceeding in a new direction for DREAMers.

About 750,000 people have received permission to stay under DACA.

When asked whether DREAMers should be worried, Trump previously told ABC News, “They shouldn’t be very worried. I do have a big heart.”