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Westside Digest

Santa Monica : Ex-Bobby's Deportation Stayed

June 19, 1986

Ian Page, the Santa Monica police officer and former British bobby who is fighting deportation to his native land, has won another victory in his battle with immigration officals.

Page's lawyer, David Ross, said the U. S. attorney general's office has ordered immigration officials to stop all deportation proceedings against Page and his family until his case has been reviewed by the Board of Immigration Appeals.

A Justice Department spokesman confirmed that the order was issued on Friday.

Page, who was sworn in as a Santa Monica policeman in 1981, had been ordered to leave the country by last Sunday.

Before Sunday's deadline, Page was under orders to leave by June 6. But an immigration judge gave him an additional nine days, which Ross said at the time would allow him to file various legal appeals to delay Page's deportation.

With the Justice Department order, "we are not under pressure," Ross said.

Page came to the United States on a student visa in 1980 and enrolled in the Rio Hondo Police Academy. In 1981 he was hired by the Santa Monica Police Department, which promised Page it would handle all the paper work necessary for him to obtain a permanent residency visa and legally stay in this country.

But because of an error in the city's application, Page will have to wait until at least July, 1987, to receive his permanent visa. In the meantime, immigration officials contend that he overstayed his student visa and must leave the country.

Ross said the Board of Immigration Appeals review of Page's motion to reopen his case could take from one to six months. If the board rejects the motion, Ross said he is prepared to bring Page's case before the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. It could be more than two years before the federal appeals court issues a ruling, and by then Page should have his visa, Ross said.

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