Taxpayers in San Francisco could soon be paying the $190,000 lawsuit settlement for an illegal alien, who says he was reported to federal immigration authorities in violation of the city's "Sanctuary City" ordinance.
On December 2, 2015 Pedro Figueroa-Zarceno walked into a police station to get back his stolen car. When he left the station, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement immediately took him into custody.
His attorneys released a document from the feds which indicates that a San Francisco police officer contacted ICE directly and told them where to find Figueroa-Zarceno.
Figueroa-Zarceno's two month detention could be a violation of San Francisco's "Sanctuary City" policy, which limits local law enforcement's ability to work with federal immigration authorities.
He's from El Salvador and has a fiancee who is a U.S. citizen, as well as an 8-year-old daughter.
Zachary Nightingale, Figueroa-Zarceno's attorney, said the ICE document shows that he was in jail for two days back in 2012 for DUI, and had a civil deportation order dating back to 2005.
He had no criminal warrants in the system.
Eileen Hirst, a spokeswoman for the sheriff's department, said police ran Figueroa-Zarceno's name through their system and found a warrant for him in the national criminal database. The sheriff's department called ICE to confirm the warrant, this process is done routinely with all warrants.
Hirst added that the department didn't provide ICE with his location during that call.
Police Sgt. Michael Andraychak said in a statement:
"It is the policy of the San Francisco Police Department to foster trust and cooperation with all people of the City and to encourage them to communicate with SFPD officers without fear of inquiry regarding their immigration status."