Here at the Presti Law Firm, we’re deeply concerned with preliminary reports being issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation that estimate cyclist deaths are up 10% from last year. We’re especially concerned because we enjoy a good cycle around White Rock Lake, and we’re very well aware of how easy it is to hurt a cyclist. Continue reading
In a suit that alleged Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) used coercive tactics against a Honduran family to give up their asylum claims has settled for $125,000. As part of the family’s claim they alleged that they were kept in a “cold and wet room” known as an “icebox” by Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) agents. The lawsuit was brought in New Jersey federal court. Little else is known about the case, but the settlement illustrates what most critics have been warning the general public about for years, that the conditions for immigration detainees need to be improved. Just this month, a report by the Washington Post stated that English classes, soccer, and legal aid for unaccompanied child migrants in immigration shelters have been cancelled. Due to the lack of resources, the department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) has been forced to cancel these programs because they are deemed “unnecessary.” While the argument could certainly be made that those programs are, in fact, not necessary for survival, as HHS claims, there is no argument for the approximately 24 immigrant deaths that have occurred over the past couple of years while in ICE custody.
Recently, two district attorneys in Massachusetts have joined several nonprofit groups to sue the federal government to halt immigration agents from making arrests at courthouses in the state of Massachusetts.
The arrests at courthouses in the state of Massachusetts are what attorneys everywhere have feared may happen to undocumented immigrants. Arrests by ICE agents at courthouses limits the ability of immigrants to access the justice system. This move is unprecedented and violates a core American principle, that every person has the right to their day in court.
With the threat of arrests waiting for immigrants on the courthouse steps, attorneys fear that immigrants may fail to either pursue and/or defend their claims in a wide variety of lawsuits that span beyond immigration such as criminal, family, personal injury and other civil matters.
District Attorneys have voiced their concerns about ICE making arrests on the courthouse steps because may hinder the prosecution of criminal cases. Specifically, district attorneys fear that it may cause key witnesses to become uncooperative and not participate in the prosecution of a case. This applies to both the defendant in the criminal matter and independent third parties.
The parties in Massachusetts have asked their local U.S. District Court to issue an injunction preventing the arrests of undocumented immigrants on the courthouse steps.
On April 29, 2019, President Trump issued a memorandum directed to the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security on asylum-seekers. The stated purpose of the memo was to enhance border security and restore integrity to our immigration system. In the President’s memo, he calls on the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security to establish new measures within 90 days. Continue reading
Recently in the news, we’ve been seeing more and more coming out about the immigration courts practices in El Paso, Texas. Violations of due process and a culture of hostility have been levied against the immigration courts in El Paso.
Violations of due process can occur from the moment of detainment up until the deportation of an immigrant. The claim brought against the immigration court in El Paso is that one of the courts is limiting evidence over 100 pages long. Most importantly, the court is limiting the evidence for asylum applications. “Coincidentally”, El Paso has the lowest rate for the granting of asylums in the United States. Nowhere else in our judicial system is evidence limited by the page amount. This is particularly worrisome when you consider more complex cases. Naturally, more complex cases require more detailed evidence. Because of the blatant violation of due process rights an advocate group has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review, yesterday. Continue reading