Letters to the Editor

From the week of February 12, 2004

Liz Lorang

Jared Jacang Maher responds: It's beginning to look like the only American education Amarzaya Toodoi will be getting is a tutorial in the ol' red, white and screw-you. A year ago, the Community College of Denver student was sent back to his home country of Mongolia by the INS to renew his student visa with the U.S. Embassy there. Consul Mark Hill denied Toodoi's request several times, prompting an inquiry by Senator Wayne Allard's office. The 24-year-old waited nearly eight months for an interview; last month, noting Toodoi's passion for his studies, a temporary consul agreed to grant the student visa pending proof that Toodoi could support himself in the U.S. (the amount required was about what he had spent on lawyer and travel fees since his ordeal began: $6,000). Toodoi returned the next day with $10,000 in traveler's checks that he said came from his girlfriend's parents; the consul questioned whether the money was legitimate. Toodoi's Denver-based attorney was able to schedule another interview last week, when Toodoi produced documentation on the source of the cash. But by then, Hill had returned to his position, and he again denied Toodoi the visa.

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