US deports man to South Korea, 38 years after he was adopted by Americans - who later abandoned him

PUBLISHED : Friday, 18 November, 2016, 10:07am
UPDATED : Friday, 18 November, 2016, 10:11pm

A man who was adopted from South Korea almost four decades ago by Americans has been deported to his native country, his attorney and a government official said Thursday.

Adam Crapser’s supporters say he doesn’t know the language or the culture of South Korea.

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement ordered Crapser deported because of criminal convictions, including assault and being a felon in possession of a weapon.

His Seattle attorney, Lori Walls, aid in an email Thursday: “Adam got deported last night. I just heard from him.”

ICE spokeswoman Rose Richeson said Crapser arrived in Seoul, South Korea, Thursday morning on board a commercial airline flight escorted by ICE deportation officers.

Crapser - who has a wife, daughter and two stepdaughters in the US - was brought to South Korea when he was 3, but no one ever sought US citizenship for him. He and his older sister were adopted by Americans, who later abandoned them. The siblings then were separated and sent to live in foster and group homes.

When Crapser was 12, he moved in with an abusive family. His new father was convicted of multiple crimes. Crapser himself later got into trouble with the law, which made him liable for deportation. He had come under the scrutiny of federal immigration authorities only after he applied for a Green Card.

Richeson said Crapser, 41, was arrested by ICE on February 8 after serving a 60-day sentence for menacing constituting domestic violence and attempted coercion. He had been held in an immigration detention center in Tacoma, Washington since then. His supporters said he had waived an appeal for his deportation because conditions in the detention centre were so miserable.

The New York Times reported recently that his birth mother in South Korea, who had put her son up for adoption because she couldn’t afford to keep him, was learning English so they could communicate when they were reunited.