A Ground Zero worker who was pardoned by Gov. Andrew Cuomo after facing deportation to Colombia was released by ICE on Wednesday.
A spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said Carlos Cardona was released Wednesday, after Cuomo pardoned him.
She said Cardona will be required to check in periodically pending the outcome of his immigration case.
Cardona had been detained since February.
Cardona suffers from acute respiratory issues, depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder after working at the World Trade Center site in 2011.
He entered the U.S. illegally in 1986 from Santiago de Cali, Colombia. He was convicted in 1990, when he was 21, of attempted criminal sale of a controlled substance. He has lived crime-free since then, and the pardon should allow him to fight deportation, Cuomo said.
"In the more than 30 years since Carlos Cardona has lived in this country, he has built a family and given back to his community, including in the aftermath of 9/11 when he assisted with ground zero recovery efforts at the expense of his own health," Cuomo said. "It is my hope this action will not only reunite Mr. Cardona with his wife and daughter but also send a message about the values of fairness and equality that New York was founded upon."
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Cuomo said on Twitter that Cardona's release was "fantastic news."