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Korean mom, arrested in Hawaii for abducting daughter, may be deported

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WOODLAND, Calif. » A South Korean immigrant convicted of kidnapping her American-born daughter from Northern California and taking the child to the mother’s native country will not have to serve any more jail time but is being turned over to U.S. immigration officials for possible deportation.

The Sacramento Bee said a Yolo County Superior Court judge on Tuesday downgraded the child abduction conviction from a felony to a misdemeanor. Jo was credited for the 175 days she spent jailed after she was arrested in Hawaii last year. 

Jo’s permission to be in the United States on a student visa had expired when she took her daughter, Hwi, from Sacramento to South Korea in 2009 without telling the child’s father. The child is now 6 and in her father’s custody.

Immigrant rights and domestic violence groups have rallied around Jo.

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