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Rutgers spy-cam student will not be deported

The Rutgers student convicted of bias intimidation, invasion of privacy and hindering a police investigation into the suicide death of roommate Tyler Clementi will not be deported. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokesman Gillian Christensen said, "Based on a review of Mr. Ravi's criminal record, ICE is not initiating removal proceedings at this time."

Dharun Ravi is an Indian national and a permanent resident of the United States, and could be deported as a result of his felony convictions. Using his webcam, he streamed video of his roommate having a romantic encounter with another man. When Tyler Clementi learned what his roommate had done, he jumped off the George Washington bridge. Jurors decided Ravi was motivated by anti-gay bigotry.

Ravi's trial generated a national debate over issues of privacy rights, anti-gay bullying and free speech. His conviction prompted heated discussions over his sentencing - was his 30 days in jail, three years of probation and 300 hours of community service sufficient punishment for his crimes? And now the ICE decision has resulted in concerns about inequity in administering immigration laws.

Immigration activists point to Ravi, whose father is a naturalized citizen and who grew up wealthy in suburban New Jersey, as a symbol of the unfairness of U.S. immigration policy. Free speech advocates have used his conviction to argue for stronger laws protecting free speech. And anti-bullying and gay-rights activists have used the case as an argument for stronger civil rights protections for gays. The case has come to symbolize many current issues in American society.

Both the prosecution and defense are appealing Ravi's conviction and sentencing.

Source: Fox News, "Feds won't seek to deport ex-Rutgers student convicted in web spying case," June 18, 2012.

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