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Court: Filipino father of child with Down syndrome shouldn’t be deported

Kyodo

The Tokyo District Court ruled Friday that a Filipino man living in Japan illegally should not be deported because his child, who suffers from Down syndrome, needs him.

“There is a need to care properly for the child. But if the father is deported, the family he leaves behind will be in an extremely difficult position (financially),” presiding Judge Yutaka Taniguchi said in the ruling.

The man, 47, sought nullification of deportation by the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau. He was found in 2009 to be here illegally and the bureau began the deportation process in May 2012.

Taniguchi granted permission for the man, who lives in Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture, to remain in the country because “opportunities are very limited for the child to receive the necessary treatment in the Philippines.”

Citing a shortage of schools and teachers for special education, Taniguchi said children with Down syndrome need specialized treatment and education based on their physical and mental needs.

According to the court, the man illegally entered Japan by ship in April 1997 and was joined by his Filipino wife, 44, about eight years later. His wife has permanent resident status.

They have two children, with their 4-year-old child suffering Down syndrome.

The child goes to a kindergarten for the disabled and visits a hospital every three months to get thyroid medication.

The immigration authorities argued that the child was at an age when it was possible to adapt to life in the Philippines, but the judge dismissed that argument.