ICE Denies Amuse Bouche Vendor's Deferral Request -- He'll Be Deported in the Next Week or Two

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French national Murat Celebi-Ariner will be deported on the next available flight.
​The attorney for Murat Celebi-Ariner said his client's Deferral of Action request was denied late last night, meaning the street-food vendor will be deported to France. Randall Caudle said he received confirmation a few hours ago from the Immigration Customs and Enforcement agency (ICE) that Celebi-Ariner would be removed to France as soon as a contracted flight becomes available, most likely in the next week or two. Celebi-Ariner -- proprietor of the Amuse Bouche street-food business -- was picked up by ICE agents on Oct. 28 for overstaying his visa waiver.

"They said he can file for legal permanent residence here, but he'd have to do that through the embassy in France," Caudle said. To do that, he said, Celebi-Ariner would have to get a waiver of his removal order, which Caudle suggested is very difficult to do. Most likely, Celebi-Ariner would have to wait five years before requesting a change in his citizenship status to return to the U.S. Celebi-Ariner, 37, married a U.S. citizen in August, two months after his visa waiver expired.

Celebi-Ariner's wife, Pelin, told SFoodie that, despite the news, the couple still plans to file for a green card tomorrow. "We're hoping it will invite them to reconsider their decision," said Pelin Celebi-Ariner, who indicated she's received conflicting advice from various immigration attorneys (Caudle, her own attorney, thinks the green card filing is unlikely to sway ICE). Still, though it's something of a hail Mary pass, Pelin Celebi-Ariner said it was worth a try. "We have nothing else to lose because they've already decided to deport him," she said.

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