Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Home At Last! Bella Maryanovsky Is Free!

Regular readers of this blog have been following the story of Bella Maryanovsky, who was arrested more than a month ago and held without being charged with any crime. Bella has been released on $5000 bond, pending a hearing at a still-unspecified date.

As you may remember, I reported on Monday that her hearing had gone quickly and smoothly, but until early Wednesday I was unable to confirm that she had actually been released and was back with her family. Now I can report that Bella Maryanovsky is free and safe at home.

I wish I could tell you that she's well. But the ordeal has taken a huge toll on her; I don't have any details and I don't know whether I could share them with you even if I did. If you can imagine being snatched out of your life and held in a criminal detention center for more than a month, for no reason at all ... I can't even imagine the stress this puts on the family, let alone the "detainee". So I can't say much at this point, except to extend my sympathies to Bella Maryanovsky and her family.

I hope my reporting on this story has helped her case, and I have been led to believe that it has done so. It's a humble pleasure to have accomplished something -- anything. But there are still many (hundreds, maybe thousands, maybe more) other legal immigrants who have been illegally arrested and who are now being held under the so-called Department of Homeland Security's so-called "Operation Return To Sender".

If you have been drawing the attention of politicians and media types to this issue, I thank you on behalf of Bella and her family. But I remind you of the others, who are not so fortunate as to be with their families yet, and I urge you to continue bringing pressure to bear on the news media (which owes it to America to start covering this story, among many others) and on our "elected" representatives. Believe it or not, they will get involved if enough of their constituents make enough noise.

For a few suggestions about who you can contact and how, and a full update on the twists and turns of the Bella Maryanovsky saga (so far), please refer to my previous post on this subject, "Bella Maryanovsky To Be Free On Bond -- Others Not So Lucky".