Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Isis M. Ramirez

Daniel Torres is finally a citizen of the land he once served as a U.S. Marine while living a lie, and this time he has a chance to make things right.

Five years ago, Torres was ready to ship out to Afghanistan for his second tour when his military superiors learned he’d lied about his immigration status in order to enlist. Instead of deploying, he was deported. The 30-year-old has been living in Mexico ever since, with a network of exiled U.S. veterans. But Torres, who told his story of banishment to earlier this year, recently learned his status has been unexpectedly changed, to naturalized citizen.

"It is all still very surreal for me," Torres, who came to America from Mexico with his family as a teen and enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2007 using falsified documents, told "I haven’t seen my family in five years, and now I will be able to spend the summer with them and see my Marines – we definitely have to have a reunion for that."

Torres’ new standing came courtesy of a special provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which allows people who serve in the U.S military during a time of conflict and who deploy overseas to be entitled to citizenship regardless of legal status in the country or place of residence. It’s exactly the kind of loophole Torres could find himself specializing in as a lawyer,…

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