Judge Orders Release of Memo that Justifies Forced State and Local Participation in Obama Deportation Program

Friday, October 28, 2011
A federal judge has ordered the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency to release a memo justifying the Obama administration’s forcing state and local law enforcement to participate in the controversial program known as Secure Communities.
The order comes 18 months after the request of several groups that oppose Securities Communities, claiming it has gone beyond its public mandate of arresting and deporting immigrants who have committed dangerous crimes. The National Day Laborer Organizing Network, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Immigration Justice Clinic of the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University sued ICE and four other federal agencies, including the FBI, to gain the release of documents that explain the program’s purpose.
While Secure Communities has been billed as an anti-crime effort, the program has in reality arrested not only illegal-immigrant felons, but also American citizens and immigrants with only minor offenses.
When the Obama administration launched Secure Communities, it said that states would have the ability to opt out. However in August, federal official announced that law enforcement in all states would have to participate in sharing information with Secure Communities.
U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin ordered the Obama administration to release the “October 2 Memorandum,” The Obama administration withheld 18 versions of the memorandum “primarily on the basis of the deliberative process privilege and the attorney-client privilege.” Scheindlin wrote that to “adopt a legal position while shielding from public view the analysis that yielded that position is offensive to [the Freedom of Information Act].”
-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky
Immigrant Groups Can Access 'Critical' Memo (by Adam Klasfeld, Courthouse News Service)

Quarter of Those Deported Through Violent Illegals Program Have No Criminal Record (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov) 


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