On May 28 my 76-year-old mother-in-law flew into LAX intending to visit my wife and me for a month. When she went through customs they discovered that in 1997 she had visited this country and overstayed her 90-day allotted time limit. My wife had major surgery that year and I, not knowing her mother would be violating any law, suggested that she stay a little longer. She stayed four months.
In 2001 she came to visit and stayed four weeks. However, this year they discovered this INS violation and wouldn't allow her into the country. She has a valid German passport, and she had a round-trip ticket. But the INS felt compelled to detain her at LAX for almost 24 hours, under guard. Then two guards escorted her onto a plane to Europe.