Mark Lyttle: A U.S. Citizen kidnapped and deported with impunity by ICE

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Mark Lyttle, a U.S. Citizen, was kidnapped and illegally deported by U.S. Government

The United States Government kidnapped and deported Mark Lyttle, a United States Citizen. The ACLU filed a lawsuit against Mr. Lyttle’s tormentors on October 13th, 2010.

The complaint narrates Mark Lyttle’s odyssey with a comprehensive, compelling factual story. Here is an excerpt:

On or about August 22, 2008, Mr. Lyttle was booked into NCI to begin serving his sentence for the misdemeanor crime…On or about September 2, 2008, while in the custody of the North Carolina Department of Corrections (“DOC”), Mr. Lyttle was “apprehended” by ICE Agent Robert Kendall and thereafter interrogated by ICE Agent D. Faucette. At the time of the interrogation, Agent Faucette was aware that Mr. Lyttle was cognitively impaired and that he had, among other things, bipolar disorder…

On or about September 4, 2008, Agent Faucette or an ICE agent acting on Agent Faucette’s behalf or at her direction, performed a search…Numerous records produced as a result of these computerized database searches revealed that Mr. Lyttle was a U.S. citizen with a valid Social Security number.(emphasis added)

Disregarding the overwhelming record evidence of Mr. Lyttle’s U.S.citizenship, as well as his significant mental disabilities, on or about September 5,2008, Agent Caputo signed a “Warrant for Arrest of Alien”…to take Mr. Lyttle into custody so that he might be processed for removal as “an alien in the country in violation of the immigration laws.”

From October 28th, 2008 to until he was flown to the U.S./Mexico border and deported on December 18th, 2008, the U.S. government unlawfully detained Mark Lyttle. After being deported, Mark Lyttle was deported yet again, this time to Honduras by Mexican authorities.

In Honduras, officials arrested Mr. Lyttle and placed him in an immigration camp. From there, he was transferred to a Honduran jail, where he allegedly(more like likely), suffered mental and physical abuse by prison guards.

Mr. Lyttle was also incarcerated in Nicaragua. Ultimately, he found a competent embassy employee in Guatemala who listened to him, performed a search of information given by Mr. Lyttle, and issued him a passport and arranged for his return to the United States on April 22nd, 2009.

Mr. Lyttle spoke no Spanish and must have gone through much suffering in his odyssey throughout Mexico and Central America. His suffering was a direct consequence of the criminal conduct of a several actors in Immigration and Customs Enforcement(ICE).

Specifically, ICE agents committed the federal crime of kidnapping. 18 U.S.C. §§ 1201(a)1:

(a)Whoever unlawfully seizes, confines, inveigles, decoys, kidnaps, abducts…when—

1. the person is willfully transported in interstate or foreign commerce…

3. any such act against the person is done within the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States as defined in section 46501 of title 49;

Mark Lyttle was unlawfully seized and willfully transported in interstate commerce and possibly foreign commerce when he was (the gov’t use of aircraft to transport Mr. Lyttle falls under special aircraft jurisdiction) flown from Georgia to Texas for deportation.

Yet the Obama administration has issued no explanation or apology to Mark Lyttle.

Reading the complaint, there is little doubt that Mr. Lyttle will receive monetary compensation for the hell that the U.S. government put him through.

Yet this will not prevent future crimes committed by ICE against United States Citizens like Mr. Lyttle. The agents that recklessly caused Mark Lyttle to be illegally detained and deported do not have to pay out of their pocket. At best, the agents will be fired or reprimanded with a memo or some such method.

In other words, the perpetrators of this crime have acted with impunity. Criminal statutes such as 18 U.S.C 1201 are created with severe penalties–up to life imprisonment–so that the public will be deterred from committing the proscribed act, in this instance kidnapping. Federal prosecutors should follow the laws they are charged with enforcing, especially as the severity of the crime increases.

Kidnapping is a high crime in of itself. When the kidnappers are agents of the federal government, the importance of deterrence becomes greater.  With the full weight of the United States Government behind a criminal, the potential for grave wrongs borders the limitless.

Yet the Obama administration has done nothing to address this serious crime that occurred under its watch. No criminal charges were brought against the responsible agents. This is a terrible omen, one that creates serious doubts as to how many other Mark Lyttles there have been and will continue to be.

In essence, the inaction of Obama & Co. leads to a disturbing conclusion: he nor those in his administration are concerned with  the  basic constitutional rights guaranteed to United States Citizens.

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3 Responses to “Mark Lyttle: A U.S. Citizen kidnapped and deported with impunity by ICE”

  1. A Says:

    You might want to check your facts. Mark Lyttle was deported in December 2008. Obama didn’t take office until January 2009.

    • bjohns15 Says:

      Yes, but Obama was in charge during Mark Lyttle’s illegal exile and his return. He has yet to apologize or issue an explanation or do anything to ensure similar cases do not occur in the future.

  2. A Says:

    Maybe that’s the point of the lawsuit.

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