A relative of Keith Byrne is calling for the removal of the two fines for minor drug offences in Ireland from the Fermoy man’s record which are having an impact on his bid for US citizenship.
“Those two minor fines shouldn't be holding him back from citizenship and certainly shouldn't have him in the process of a quick removal from the country,” Jeffrey Snader told Newstalk Breakfast.
He said the exact details of the offer to Mr Byrne from immigration authorities are unclear.
When asked the duration of a ban from returning to the US, Mr Snader said the rules are also unclear. “It would seem that accepting it would make it difficult to return to the country in a reasonable time frame.”
He said that while Mr Byrne is exhausted he is staying focused on the task at hand, “he will do what he has to do to be reunited with his family.”
In response to a question about the chance of an appeal, he said: “We're talking about someone who had two minor fines in 2005, 2006, it doesn't really fall in line with any thing in terms of what the standards we would have for someone that we wanted here in our country.
“If he is the exact kind of person we want, those two minor fines shouldn't be holding him back from citizenship and certainly shouldn't have him in the process of a quick removal from the country.
“Right now we're taking as many shots as we can, wherever we can. Whoever would help, whether it be in the US or in Ireland or any where. The US doesn't acknowledge expungement so even if Ireland had said 'we're expunging his record of those two offences' there still wouldn't be enough for US Immigration law to accept him, but if the record was actually removed - those fines were considered removed, that could have an effect.
“To me, that's a reasonable thing to ask at the moment.
Mr Snader said the family’s aim is to have as many people as possible “raise enough noise about the issue that we realise is just the wrong action. There aren't a lot of people who would argue that Keith should be deported from America.”
He said his Keith's wife Keren is spending her time contacting people and trying every avenue she can.