Irish nanny Aisling Brady McCarthy was arrested by US Immigration and Custom Enforcement Officers in Boston on Tuesday for a 2002 visa violation shortly after her release from state custody.
McCarthy, originally from Co. Cavan, traveled to the US on a tourist visa in 2002 and had been living and working illegally in the US since its expiration. She had been the subject of a final order of removal allowing for her to be deported as soon as she was released from custody.
Officers detained McCarthy for the long-standing visa violation just a day after prosecutors dropped a murder charge relating to the death of a child in her care in January 2013. The decision to drop the case against McCarthy was made after the state medical examiner changed the cause of the child’s death from “homicide” to “undetermined”.
“As a significant visa violator, she is an ICE enforcement priority,” Shawn Neudauer, the agency’s spokesman in Boston told the Irish Times.
“She was issued a final order of removal from the United States in 2013 and will remain in ICE custody pending deportation from the US.”
McCarthy’s lawyers organized that she would be arrested by agents in the ICE field office in Boston at midday (5pm Irish time) on Tuesday. It is reported that she has purchased a ticket to Ireland and may fly home Tuesday evening if she is in possession of all the correct documentation. It is believed the agency have no interest in holding her in custody and they have removed the GPS monitoring bracelet she was forced to wear since being released on bail in May to await her trial.
“ICE is trying to expedite her deportation at her request but there are some procedural matters that must be dealt with first,” Neudauer continued.
McCarthy, 37, was working as a nanny in Boston without a US work visa up until January 2013. She was charged with the murder one-year-old Rehma Sabir, the baby she had been looking after for almost six months.
Rehma Sabir was found unconscious in her crib and rushed to the hospital with head injuries on January 14, 2013. She died two days later on her first birthday.
The original medical report found that Rehma died from blunt-force head injuries — but also that the child had pre-existing bone fractures. McCarthy always claimed that Rehma died from injuries sustained on a family holiday while not in her care and proclaimed her innocence. Expert witnesses for the defense also noted that Rehma was often sick and had suffered bone fractures in her spine weeks before her death while traveling with her mother and not in the nanny’s care.
On Monday, the state medical examiner ruled that the death was not a homicide and the charges against McCarthy were dropped.