Missouri Woman Gets Last Minute Ruling to Stay in US

(AP) – A Missouri woman who faced deportation to her native Thailand after losing her green card over a felony theft conviction will remain in the U.S. following a last-minute reversal by immigration officials.

Komdown “Dow” Boyer, who moved to the U.S. as a child after her mother married an American soldier, was convicted late last year of stealing money from the pizza restaurant where she had worked a decade, most recently as general manager. Boyer, 44, was sentenced to probation and ordered to pay about $51,000 in restitution after pleading guilty to felony theft. She said she needed the money for bills after her husband, a mechanic, had his legs crushed by a car.

Boyer has three sons, two of whom are in the U.S. military, and a 5-year-old daughter.

Defense attorney Javad Khazaeli told The Associated Press his client was taken suddenly on Monday from a Missouri county jail to an international flight preparing to leave Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport before the decision was overturned less than one hour before the scheduled takeoff. Khazaeli, a former federal counter-terrorism prosecutor for the Department of Homeland Security, said the government has that discretion in some low-level offenses.

“It took awhile, but we got the case in front of the right people,” said Khazaeli, who coincidentally was driving to St. Louis from his former home in Chicago Monday when Boyer’s husband left a series of messages on his cellphone

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