Welcome home Akiko
The Bradenton mother who along with her husband and children got themselves caught in an immigration nightmare, has arrived back home in Florida. Let this be one more lesson about how @#% ^ ! ICE is. Read about other nightmares here, here, here, and here if you want more proof.
Note that Keith Campbell sold his lawnmowing business while this was going on. The Campbells could be in financial problems because of our lovely immigration system. Doesn't it make you feel so proud of government bureaucrats that they need to protect us from Japanese housewives and fallen Iraq war veterans?
Linked to- Adam, Bright & Early, Cao, Third World County,
MANATEE COUNTY -- A Bradenton mother says she is relieved to be back home following a battle with U.S. immigration officials that kept her and her children in Japan and separated from her husband for eight months.
The case of Keith and Akiko Campbell, which generated international media attention, ended with a decision by U.S. officials to issue the Japanese-born Akiko a rare hardship waiver.
Akiko Campbell and her two sons returned to their Bradenton home Friday.
"Being home, it was like I've been here the whole time but have just been through an eight-month nightmare," said Akiko Campbell, 41.
Problems for the couple started in 1998.
Federal immigration officials said Akiko Campbell committed fraud when she entered the United States in that year from Japan with a fiancee visa, even though she had already married Keith.
The couple say officials in the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo told them to do so.
Akiko Campbell was denied permanent residency after that, though the couple continued filing appeals. She continued to live in the United States for nine years and had two sons, Leo, 4, and Micah, 18 months.
Finally, U.S. immigration officials told Akiko to fly to Tokyo so she could get a new visa, Keith Campbell said.
But when she arrived in January with her sons, she learned her visa would not be issued and, because the U.S. officials said fraud was involved, she would not be allowed to re-enter the United States for 10 years.
Keith Campbell, 47, now calls it "gestapo-type trickery." Still, he said he harbors no ill feelings toward the U.S. government.
"How can I be bitter at the country when everyone came together to get this done?" he said. "That doesn't hurt anybody but me if I'm bitter."
The couple did not not sit idly by waiting for the bureaucratic mess to untangle itself.
They doggedly kept at U.S. immigration officials and embarked on an aggressive media campaign to bring attention to Akiko's case. Their story has appeared in newspapers in more than 50 countries, Keith Campbell said.
Shortly before the U.S. government issued the waiver, Keith sold his lawn care business so he could travel across the country doing media interviews.
The two communicated using an Internet Web camera and through instant messaging, he said. Akiko, who lived with her parents during their forced separation, worried she might be stuck.