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Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal

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  1. Undocumented and Unaccounted For: A Definitive Podcast Explainer About #WhereAreTheChildren

    by , 06-01-2018 at 01:38 PM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Via NPR's Latino USA:

    A report released last week about authorities losing track of almost 1,500 young immigrants has caused a lot of reactions. The young migrants are asylum seekers who arrived at the U.S. border without their parents, and were later released into the custody of guardians or sponsors. Recently, the government admitted that they haven’t been able to reach almost 1,500 of those sponsors, drawing concerns that the kids could be at risk. This disclosure has raised the question: what is the government’s role in making sure these kids are safe?

  2. Separating Mothers from their Children is Abhorrent and Unfortunately we Have Seen it Before

    by , 05-29-2018 at 06:29 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    This past Memorial Day weekend photographs were published on The USA Today network depicting refugee children sleeping uncovered on concrete floors behind locked gates like stray animals. The photographs were used to illustrate how the Trump administration’s immigration enforcement policies are crimes against humanity. The result was justifiable outrage stemming from the Trump administration’s election to prosecute, and then separate mothers from their children after they violate the criminal law prohibiting the improper entry by an alien.


    The only problem, the photographs making the rounds were taken in 2014, and the abuses illustrated were perpetrated by the hand of the Obama administration. The photographs went viral on social media, and the misguided, although understandable horror was further fueled by Jake Silverstein, the Editor in Chief of the New York Times Magazine, who Tweeted them out, and subsequently was required to issue a #FakeNews mea culpa.

    Let me be clear
    , the Obama administration engaged in a systemic assault on the rights of immigrants during his tenure as the Deporter-in-Chief. And examples continue to emerge. The International Human Rights Clinic at the University of Chicago School of Law recently released a report outlining crimes the Obama administration allegedly committed against refugee children in their custody.

    Examples of abuses against immigrant children include:

    • Punching a child in the head three times;
    • Kicking a child in the ribs;
    • Using a stun gun on a boy, causing him to fall to the ground, shaking, with his eyes rolling back in his head;
    • Running over a 17-year-old with a patrol vehicle and then punching him several times;
    • Verbally abusing detained children, calling them dogs and “other ugly things”;
    • Denying detained children permission to stand or move freely for days and threatening children who stood up with transfer to solitary confinement in a small, freezing room;
    • Denying a pregnant minor medical attention when she reported pain, which preceded a stillbirth;
    • Subjecting a 16-year-old girl to a search in which they “forcefully spread her legs and touched her private parts so hard that she screamed”;
    • Leaving a 4-pound premature baby and her minor mother in an overcrowded and dirty cell full of sick people, against medical advice;
    • Throwing out a child’s birth certificate and threatening him with sexual abuse by an adult male detainee.

    These types of abuses against refugee children were a dirty open secret of the Obama administration, and were largely ignored by the legacy media, as evidenced by the fact that prominent forces on the left seized the opportunity by circulating the 2014 photographs that parenthetically are not all that dissimilar from those released in 2004 depicting Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse. Those on the left either have very short memories, or they were hoping that we do. We don’t.

    Cindy Carcamo, a journalist who has faithfully covered immigration for The Los Angeles Times, appeared on PBS News Hour over the weekend, and explained how President Trump's policy of enforcing the criminal law against illegal entry and separating mothers from their children also occurred when Obama implemented his policy of jailing refugee mothers with their children in deportation internment camps.


    It should also be noted that Obama similarly implemented an aggressive strategy of criminally enforcing the immigration law. When Obama left office 52% of all federal criminal prosecutions were for immigration related crimes of the exact nature that Trump and Sessions are now focused on prosecuting. Typically, it was reported that Carcamo is now facing a backlash for straying from the Democrat controlled narrative by infusing some truth into the immigration debate.

    Unfortunately, the outrage we are currently witnessing from hyperpartisan Democrats, far left leaning pundits, and former Obama administration officials about Trump's policy (which is abhorrent) has been conveniently manufactured for political gain. It should also be noted that these same people now voicing outrage were curiously (strategically?) silent about the plight of immigrant children when the Deporter-in-Chief was torturing them in deportation jails.

    For the record, I’m outraged by both Obama AND Trump. I'm also disgusted because the groundwork for Trump’s enforcement policies was engineered by Obama, and now it is too late to do anything about it. If only Democrats were as outraged when Obama was President, and they actually had influence on the Executive Branch. But I get it, they had a false narrative to advance.

    The silver lining from all of this is that the abuse of immigrants is finally being exposed on a wider scale, as I have grown hoarse screaming from rooftops to deaf ears. And to think all it took was for a Republican to win the Presidency.

    Matthew Kolken is an immigration lawyer and the managing partner of Kolken & Kolken, located in Buffalo, New York. His legal opinions and analysis are regularly solicited by various news sources, including MSNBC, CNN, FOX News, The Washington Post, Forbes Magazine, and The Los Angeles Times, among others. You can follow him @mkolken.

    Updated 05-29-2018 at 03:17 PM by MKolken

  3. Update on Husband of Army Chaplain Facing Deportation

    by , 05-24-2018 at 09:23 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)


    Via the Military Times:

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has granted a reprieve to allow a Fort Bragg Army chaplain’s husband, who was facing imminent deportation, to remain in country, their attorney said Tuesday.

    ICE decided to release Avila-Rodriguez and allow him to continue residing in the United States under supervision while he and Brown work on getting him legal permanent residency, attorney Patrick Hatch said.

    Click here for more.
  4. Report Reveals that From 2009 to 2014 CBP was Abusing Immigrant Children

    by , 05-23-2018 at 02:07 PM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Via the ACLU:

    Documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union featured in a new report released today show the pervasive abuse and neglect of unaccompanied immigrant children detained by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The report was produced in conjunction with the International Human Rights Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School.

    The report is based on over 30,000 pages of documents dated between 2009 and 2014. The documents were obtained by the ACLU Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties and the ACLU Foundation of Arizona through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit co-counseled with Cooley LLP. The documents feature numerous cases of shocking violence and abuse against migrant children, many of whom arrived in the United States fleeing violence in their home countries.


    Examples of the documented abuses include allegations that CBP officials:

    • Punched a child’s head three times
    • Kicked a child in the ribs
    • Used a stun gun on a boy, causing him to fall to the ground, shaking, with his eyes rolling back in his head
    • Ran over a 17-year-old with a patrol vehicle and then punched him several times
    • Verbally abused detained children, calling them dogs and “other ugly things”
    • Denied detained children permission to stand or move freely for days and threatened children who stood up with transfer to solitary confinement in a small, freezing room
    • Denied a pregnant minor medical attention when she reported pain, which preceded a stillbirth
    • Subjected a 16-year-old girl to a search in which they “forcefully spread her legs and touched her private parts so hard that she screamed”
    • Left a 4-pound premature baby and her minor mother in an overcrowded and dirty cell full of sick people, against medical advice
    • Threw out a child’s birth certificate and threatened him with sexual abuse by an adult male detainee.


    Click here to read the report.

    #ThanksObama

    Updated 05-23-2018 at 02:42 PM by MKolken

  5. Trump Admin Says Schools Should Decide Whether to Report Undocumented Kids to ICE

    by , 05-23-2018 at 08:09 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Simply appalling.

    Via Politico:

    Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said Tuesday that it’s up to individual schools to decide whether to call U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement if they suspect their students are undocumented.

    “That’s a school decision. It’s a local community decision,” DeVos said during testimony before the House Education and the Workforce Committee, adding that “we have laws and we also are compassionate.” Her comments came in her first-ever appearance before the education panel, lasting close to three and a half hours.


    Click here for more.
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