Bogdan Vladu of Romania will probably have to wait months before the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service decides whether he receives political asylum in the United States. On Tuesday, Vladu announced that he is defecting after the Modern Pentathlon World Championships in San Antonio.
Vladu told reporters that living conditions in Romania are poor and that some Communist hardliners who led the Eastern European nation under dictator Nicolae Ceausescu have regained power. Vladu’s application will go to the political asylum division of the INS office in Houston.
Margaret Ramos, INS asylum director in Houston, declined to comment on Vladu’s case, but said the several steps of the process could take more than two months to complete.