A Palestinian immigrant in Alabama has racked up 35 arrests and four felony convictions for crimes ranging from shoplifting to assault, but the feds can't deport him because no country will take him, reports the Birmingham News. Soyfan Eldani, 45, was detained yet again this week and accused of possessing crack cocaine. When the local sheriff contacted federal authorities, he learned about the bureaucratic dead end.
Eldani holds an Egyptian passport, and federal immigration officials say they have tried and failed to get Egypt, Israel, and Kuwait to accept him. Complicating matters is that Eldani claims to be a citizen of Palestine, which the US doesn't recognize. (In fact, the sheriff in Hueytown says the explanation he got was that the US can't deport him to a country that doesn't exist.) So for now and the foreseeable future, Eldani remains Alabama's problem. "It doesn't seem fair to us that if they refuse to take their problem child back, we are stuck with him," says the sheriff. "Am I the only one who thinks this is insane?"