A New Britain couple scheduled to be deported to Pakistan said they will not seek sanctuary and will leave on a flight from John F. Kennedy Airport Monday night.
Fifty-year-old Malik Rehman and his 42-year-old wife Zahida Altaf have lived in the US for 18 years and have a 5-year-old daughter, Ronya.
They do not have a criminal record and pay taxes, and own a business on New Britain’s Broad Street called “Pizza Corner” – which they just opened in November of 2017.
Senator Richard Blumenthal asked Immigration and Customs Enforcement to allow the couple to stay, but the family told NBC Connecticut they have not received permission and are scheduled to leave.
Malik’s biggest concern is the health of his daughter and what her future holds.
“She has asthma. And my country has a lot of pollution not medical health good system not educate system," he said.
According to ICE, the couple entered the country on non-immigrant visas in 2000 and never left.
"An immigration judge with the Executive Office Review issued them final orders of removal in January 2008, and that decision was upheld by the Bureau of Immigration Appeals in May 2010. Both individuals are currently enrolled in the agency’s Alternatives to Detention program, scheduled for an upcoming removal," a statement from ICE read.
The family's flight is scheduled to leave at 9 p.m.