A US Marine who served in Iraq before forced out of the only country he's ever known when it was discovered he was an undocumented immigrant can now officially call himself and American.
Daniel Torres, who came to the US on a visitor's visa as a teen then remained in the country with them illegally after it expired, used a false birth certificate to join the Marines in 2007.
He served in the Iraq War before authorities discovered he was never a US citizen. He was not deported, but left voluntarily in 2011 after being honorably discharged from the military.
Torres, 30, has lived in Tijuana, Mexico--the city of his birth--ever since.
On Thursday, he was sworn in as a United States citizen in a brief ceremony in San Diego, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
Under special provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act, people who served in the military during a period of hostility may become US citizens without typical requirements such as permanent residence in the US.
After his swearing in, Torres told reporters he'd chosen to become a Marine nearly a decade earlier to fulfill a life goal.