San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Costa Rican in gay marriage avoids deportation from U.S.

A judge in Texas ruled a gay Costa Rican would not be deported because he’s married to a U.S. citizen, according to the Houston Chronicle.

The case represents the first time in Texas an illegal immigrant has been granted a reprieve due to a same-sex marriage. Tico David González married Mario Ramírez in California in 2008. The closing of the deportation case due to a same-sex marriage follows a trend seen throughout the United States in the past year.

González overstayed his travel visa after arriving to the U.S. legally several years ago. He has a clean criminal record, and González’s lawyer John Nechman believed González should be shown leniency just like illegal heterosexual immigrants married to U.S. citizens.

Cases about same-sex marriages involving an illegal immigrant started to see more success after the Obama administration asked the Department of Justice to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act, commonly known as DOMA, which does not recognize marriage between same-sex couples in the United States.

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