A New York City landlord has been fined $17,000 for threatening to call ICE on an illegal alien renter in a case that officials are calling unprecedented.
Holly Ondaan, an immigrant from Guyana, had been renting a Jamaica, Queens, home from Dianna Lysius since 2011, but eviction proceedings were filed in January 2018 when she failed to keep paying her rent.
That's when Lysius sent a text to her renter threatening to call Immigration and Customs Enforcement about her illegal immigration status.
Ondaan was an illegal immigrant at the time but has since obtained a green card in July.
New York's Commission on Human Rights then filed a complaint against Lysius and a judge ordered her to pay $12,000 to Ondaan, and another $5,000 in a fine to the city.
It is believed this is the first time a landlord has been punished for threatening to call immigration authorities on an illegal immigrant.
"I REPORTED YOU TO IMMIGRATION BOO THEY KNOW IM THE LANDLORD TO PROVIDE THEM KEYS COME DIRECTLY TO YOU," Lysius allegedly texted to Ondaan.
New York Commission on Human Rights official Sapna Raj told CNN that they would continue to defend illegal aliens against such threats.
"We will not allow our city's most vulnerable to be further marginalized out of fear for their safety in their own homes," Raj said.
"Immigration status, citizenship, and national origin (perceived or actual) are protected categories under our law, and we will continue to fight to ensure those protections are enforced to the fullest extent," she added.
The New York City Commission on Human Rights has been criticized for their guidelines on the use of preferred pronouns, which could lead to heavy fines if ignored.