A twice-deported Mexican citizen with a 15-year criminal history was arrested for allegedly drawing swastikas at Washington, D.C.’s Union Station, but reportedly does not face deportation under the Biden administration’s standards for arrest or removal.
“The criminal who defaced Union Station with antisemitic symbols, Geraldo Pando, should not have been able to commit this act of hatred. He is a convicted felon and an unlawful migrant with a criminal history of deportations and arrests, including for assault on a first responder,” Sen. Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican, told the Washington Examiner.
DC POLICE ARREST SUSPECT ACCUSED OF SPRAYING SWASTIKAS ON UNION STATION
Geraldo Pando was arrested last month and charged with the display of certain emblems and defacing private/public property, the Washington Examiner reported. He allegedly drew the swastika symbols one day after International Holocaust Remembrance Day and the incident is being investigated as a possible hate crime.
Pando, 34, has a 15-year criminal history, including a 35-page criminal history in Colorado for crimes stretching from possession of drugs to misdemeanor theft.
He had been detained by police earlier in January for vandalizing the U.S. Capitol Police headquarters, a senior Senate aide told the Washington Examiner. He was released, however, because ICE did not ask for him to be held until he was in federal custody.
“It is inexcusable that ICE did not process him and he was released back into the community to commit such a heinous crime,” Portman told the outlet. “This administration’s poor policies and reluctance to remove criminals from our streets continue to result in additional harm to our country.”
The Biden administration restricted ICE agents last year to arresting only three categories of illegal immigrants – recent border crossers, national security threats and aggravated felons. Arrests outside those categories required approval from a superior.
The swastikas found on Union Station ignited a firestorm of outrage, with some liberals claiming it was done by someone “emboldened” by the previous Trump administration.
Conservatives have since voiced their outrage with the Biden administration on social media following the report that the suspect is an illegal immigrant who won’t face deportation.
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Fox News’ Adam Shaw contributed to this report.