Border and Enforcement News

Posted on: February 28th, 2018
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Court of Appeals Rules Trump Travel Ban Violates U.S. Constitution

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals based in Virginia voted 9-4 that the travel ban instituted by the Trump administration was in violation of the U.S. Constitution, based on its religious discrimination against individuals. The court cited Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric as a determining factor in the decision, finding that this bias was the rationale behind the ban. 4th Circuit Chief Judge Roger Gregory explicitly stated in the ruling that the ban was found to be, “unconstitutionally tainted with animus toward Islam.” The main point of dissention in the decision was critical of the court utilizing statements from Trump’s campaign trail to frame acts taken while in office. The decision goes a step further than a previous ruling from the San Francisco based 9th Circuit Court of Appeals which found that the ban violated immigration law but made no ruling as to the ban’s constitutionality. The Supreme Court has announced its plans to hear both sides of the case, which will take place in April, with an impending ruling to be announced by the end of June.

For more information, view the full article.


Federal Court Judge Rules to Block Move to End DACA

On February 13, 2018, Federal Court Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis ruled that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) beneficiaries and states were likely to succeed in their challenge of the manner in which the program was ended. Judge Garaufis agreed with the Plaintiffs’ claim that the reasons behind Donald Trump’s termination of the program were arbitrary, specifically calling justification for ending the program based upon its illegality a, “plainly incorrect factual premise.”  Although the decision will likely extend the program past the March 5 deadline, some are still encouraging congress to strive for a long-term decision on the program by that date. The decision opens the door for current DACA recipients to renew their applications, though there is no guarantee for new applicants.

For more information, view the full article.


Temporary Protected Status Extended 18 months for Syria

After review, Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen determined that the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation for Syria remained warranted. Secretary Nielsen concluded that the armed conflict was still ongoing and the conditions in Syria which originally warranted the designation persisted, so Syria’s TPS designation was extended 18 months. The approximately 7,000 Syrian TPS beneficiaries will be eligible to re-register for an extension of their status through September 30, 2019. During this 18-month extension period, the Secretary will again evaluate the conditions to determine whether to terminate the TPS designation or extend it again. In addition to meeting the other requirements, eligibility for TPS under Syria’s current designation is dependent upon having maintained continuous residence in the United States since August 2016 and continuous physical presence since October 1, 2016.

For more information, view the DHS press release.


ICE Releases Protocol for Civil Immigration Enforcement Inside Courthouses

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) released a directive providing information regarding protocol for civil immigration enforcement efforts inside of courtrooms. Calling the practice, “wholly consistent with longstanding law enforcement practices, nationwide” ICE asserts its right to conduct enforcement efforts inside of courtrooms, which were long thought to be sensitive locations, such as schools and churches. ICE also claimed a lack of cooperation with local law enforcement jurisdictions necessitates such efforts. The agency also referenced the practice of federal, state, and local law enforcement officials similarly targeting courthouses, since such individuals’ presence in courthouses is predicated on unrelated criminal reasons. ICE stated that its agents should avoid conducting such apprehensions in courtrooms that handle non-criminal proceedings, such as small claims court or family court. This discretion, however, is left to the Field Office Director, Special Agent in Charge, or his or her designee.

For more information, view the ICE directive.

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