There has been no explanation, apology or refund given to Majed Shattai Al-Dhafairi, a Saudi man who was mistreated by immigration officers in the US and then detained before being flown back to the Kingdom.
Al-Dhafairi left for the US after receiving his passport from the US Embassy with what he believed was a valid visa. However, on arriving at Los Angeles airport, his passport was seized and he was mistreated by immigration officers and held in custody for 24 hours.
When asked for an explanation, Department of Homeland Security officials told him that there were no records of him being issued a visa.
In spite of following up on the incident for the last few months, the US Embassy in Riyadh has offered no explanation, let alone an apology. Nor has Al-Dhafairi been reimbursed his ticket money or visa costs.
In response, the embassy told him it cannot pay for his ticket or visa and that rejected applicants need to bear the costs of any new visa applications if they so choose to apply.
Al-Dhafairi said he received his passport with what he believed was a valid visa in December 2009. The visa had been issued on Oct. 24, 2009 and was valid until Oct. 17, 2011.
“I left for Los Angeles via Dubai on Dec. 27, 2009. When the plane landed in the US and as soon as the gates were opened, I was taken by two officials to a private room where my passport was taken and I was informed that my visa was invalid and that I was not allowed to enter the country,” said Al-Dhafairi, who was then questioned for 10 hours and humiliated. (More)