The Associated Press has learned that a registered sex offender working as an unpaid intern for Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey is facing deportation after being arrested by federal immigration authorities.

Senator Bob Menendez during US Senate debate (Dino Flammia, Townsquare Media)

A U.S. official told The Associated Press that officials at the Homeland Security Department instructed immigration agents not to arrest 18-year-old Luis Abrahan Sanchez Zavaleta until after Election Day.

Sanchez, who entered the U.S. on a now-expired visitor visa from Peru, was arrested Dec. 6 at his New Jersey home.

The official says Sanchez told agents he was working on immigration issues in one of Menendez' New Jersey offices. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the case publicly.

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