Monday, March 10, 2014

Reporting crime, assisting police puts immigrants in line for visas

Crime victims can apply for visas to stay in this country.   - - Donna Poisl

By Curt Brown, also by Simon Rios

NEW BEDFORD — When two young men beat and robbed David Rolando Oliva in the South End on a summer's night in 2010, little did he know it would put him in line for an immigration benefit allowing him to stay legally in the U.S. and later apply for permanent residence.

Some time after the beating, Oliva, who said he was living in the U.S. illegally at the time his tourist visa expired, learned he qualified for a so-called U Visa, if he cooperated with police and aided in the prosecution of his case.

And he did cooperate with police, according to New Bedford Detective Capt. Steven Vicente.
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