TAMPA — Youssef Megahed celebrated victory four months ago when a federal jury in Tampa acquitted him of explosives charges in a case that raised suspicion of terrorism.
The nightmare he and his family endured for nearly two years had ended — but not for long.
Three days after the not-guilty verdicts April 3, U.S. immigration officials whisked Megahed away to face deportation.
The American Civil Liberties Union decried the immigration charge as vindictive. The Council on American-Islamic Relations called it a slap in the face. The arrest angered enough jurors who spent 21 hours deliberating after the two-week criminal trial that they spoke out and labeled it “fundamentally wrong.”
Megahed’s fate now hangs in the hands of an immigration judge in Miami-Dade County. On Monday, deportation proceedings begin there at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Krome Detention Center. (More)