Evangelist Torben Sondergaard Deported from US After 1 Year in ICE Jail Cell: 'Please Pray'
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CBN News has received confirmation that Christian evangelist and refugee Torben Søndergaard was deported from the United States in the last 24 hours.
He was reportedly escorted by two U.S. Immigration officers back to Denmark, as per standard protocol. The officers treated him with dignity and respect.
Upon arriving in Denmark, he was subject to normal passport control and was allowed to immediately turn around and fly to another country. He is now free and is safely reunited with his family outside of Denmark.
Søndergaard's legal team says, "Now comes a time of much-needed rest and healing, and gratefulness to God that his painful experience of being detained is now over. Torben has requested privacy and will not be online or responding to calls and emails for the time being. Please continue to pray for Torben's pending Asylum petition in the US federal court. If it is granted, he will be able to return to the US immediately with his family."
Søndergaard was held for a year in the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Baker County Facility in Macclenny, Florida.
He was taken into custody on June 30 last year in Florida by agents from the Joint Terrorism Task Force, while awaiting a decision on an asylum application with the U.S. government. He was told he was being arrested for gun smuggling, even though he was never charged with that. He was accused of overstaying his visa.
But Border Security and Enforcement Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Clay Higgins (R-LA), says Søndergaard "has been persecuted by this administration and targeted, we believe, because he is an evangelical Christian minister."
Søndergaard and his family fled Denmark in 2019, fearing persecution and arrest following a harassment campaign by the government and media.
Earlier this month, he wrote on his Facebook page, "It could also happen that I will be deported now, and then after I am deported, and am back to Europe, I could actually win my case and be able to come back to America. But it needs a miracle. And if I lose, it looks like it is, 'Goodbye with America,' for me."
Torben is the founder of The Last Reformation, a worldwide movement that seeks to return Christianity to the Book of Acts. He also began the Jesus Center in Denmark, which trained disciples from 30 nations to spread this message around the world.
Attacks against his ministry in Denmark began in 2016 when the Jesus Center was investigated by six different Danish government agencies for everything from food safety to unpaid taxes. Officials found nothing wrong. The government then investigated his family when they began homeschooling.
Danish TV infiltrated his ministry with undercover reporters for a documentary called God's Best Children, which lumped Torben in with other leaders of so-called "radical Christian" ministries who had had serious moral or ethical failures or even criminal activity.
Torben told CBN News the documentary ruined his reputation in Denmark.
Søndergaard asks Christians to, "Please continue to pray. Pray for the miracle to happen, but also pray for the church. Pray for revival. Pray for the judge, that they will do what is right and not be influenced by the lies and the pressure they are under. Pray for God's will to be done. And of course, pray for my family..."
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