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  1. Napolitano: Review of 300,000 Deportation Cases to "Begin Shortly"

    by , 10-20-2011 at 05:00 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    CNN reports that the Obama administration will soon undertake a review of the 300,000 pending deportation cases separating "high priority" criminal cases from "low priority" non criminal cases.
    In practice, I have seen very little if any favorable exercise of prosecutorial discretion involving "low priority" noncriminal deportation cases.  The few cases that I have seen the Department moving to administratively close proceedings involve individuals whose cases have garnered media attention.  
    You certainly don't want any bad press in an election year.
    Needless to say, I predict that this most recent announcement will not add up to a hill of beans.
    Click here for more propaganda from the Obama administration.
  2. The BIA’s Ridiculous Deadline

    I once heard about an Admiral during WWII who described carrier warfare as hours of boredom punctuated by moments of terror.  That is a bit like how I think of appeals to the Board of Immigration Appeals.
    First, you file your appeal.  Nothing happens for a couple months.
    Then, the transcript arrives.  You theoretically have 21 days to write the brief.  However, by the time you receive the transcript, a few days have passed.  Plus, you have to make sure that the appeal brief is received by the Board no later than day 21, so you have to mail it early.  Thus, you actually have about 15 or 16 days to write the brief.  Of course, the transcript always arrives when you are about to leave for vacation or when you have three individual hearings to prepare for, so the 15 or 16 days is not enough.  You can ask for one extension (which seems to be granted as a matter of course), so you can realistically gain a total of about 36 or 37 days to prepare the brief.
    After the brief is filed, you will then wait one to two years for a decision.
    So my question is: Since these appeals take so long anyway, why are we given such little time to prepare a brief?  
    Perhaps limiting the time for the alien to submit a brief is a way of stopping her from dragging out her final removal date.  But given the one to two year (or more) time frame for these appeals, is another few weeks going to make much difference?
    There is, of course, a downside to limiting the time for the brief: Given most attorneys' busy schedules, it is difficult to do our best work when we have insufficient time to write the brief, particularly if we are unlucky enough to have the transcript and briefing schedule arrive at a bad time (which always seems to happen).
    The obvious solution is to extend the time for filing the brief.  Federal appeals courts (at least where I practice) generally give about 45 days to file the brief.  Lower courts usually give at least 30 days.  All these courts grant extensions where warranted.  At a minimum, the BIA should initially grant six weeks to file the brief; at least this would save lawyers the time and uncertainty of having to ask for a three-week extension.
    With more time, we can expect better briefs-not only from the private bar, but also from DHS.  I imagine this would result in better BIA decisions.  There is really no good reason for such short deadlines with the BIA.  The Board should consider extending the time for filing briefs.
    Originally posted on the Asylumist:
  3. Blogging: America's right turn from Nation of Immigrants to Deportation Nation; by Roger Algase

    As ID announced in its October 19 issue, ICE has deported almost 400,000 people this year, almost half with no criminal violations at all, and the other half possibly including many people without any criminal records other than ones related to immigration. There can be no doubt that many of the people deported had US citizen or lawful permanent resident spouses, children, parents or other close family members. Many were also, without any doubt, productive, hard-working tax-paying members of society.
    Many of those deported may also have had to endure intolerable and inhuman conditions in immigration jails which, as many have pointed out, seem to be run more for the private profit of well connected contractors than for the security or protection of the American people. Aside from the shame of turning away from being a Nation of Immigrants to becoming Deportation Nation, what are the implications of America's sharp turn to the right on immigration, where one presidential candidate is booed for suggesting that the country should "have a heart" toward immigrants and another is cheered for suggesting that they should be electrocuted?
    No matter how bad any situation might become, there is always a tendency to assume that the worst has already happened. History shows again and again that this assumption is often false. The Obama administration's deportation mania, evidently unaffected by any palliative Morton memos, may lead inevitably to the next step - closing our borders completely. The main ingredient for this poisonous concoction, anti-immigrant racism, is already in place.
  4. Latinos Disproportionately Targeted for Deportation by the Obama Administration

    by , 10-19-2011 at 07:30 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The Cal Berkeley Institute on Law and Social Policy has just released a report entitled: "Secure communities by the number: An Analysis of Demographics and Due Process."  The report was written by Aarti  Kohli, Peter l. Markowitz, and Lisa Chavez, who were motivated to action by the million plus people that have been deported since the beginning of the Obama administration, and the fact that almost 300,000 individuals are currently facing deportation.
    These staggering numbers are in large part a result of the Secure Communities program, which partners local law enforcement with immigration officials.  The report analyzes the data that was generated by the Federal Government from the program. The findings show systemic deprivation of due process, that a significant percentage of apprehended individuals should never have been placed in immigration custody, and the existence of racial profiling.
    Here are the key findings of the report:

    Approximately 3,600 United States citizens have been arrested by ice through the Secure communities program;
    More than one-third (39%) of individuals arrested through Secure Communities report that they have a U.S. citizen spouse or child, meaning that approximately 88,000 families with U.S. citizen members have been impacted by Secure communities;
    Latinos comprise 93% of individuals arrested through Secure communities though they only comprise 77% of the undocumented population in the United States;
    Only 52% of individuals arrested through Secure communities are slated to have a hearing before an immigration judge;
    Only 24% of individuals arrested through Secure communities and who had immigration hearings had an attorney compared to 40% of all immigration court respondents who have counsel;
    Only 2% of non-citizens arrested through Secure communities are granted relief from deportation by an immigration judge as compared to 14% of all immigration court respondents who are granted relief;
    A large majority (83%) of people arrested through Secure communities are placed in ICE detention as compared with an overall DHS immigration detention rate of 62%, and ICE does not appear to be exercising discretion based on its own prioritization system when deciding whether or not to detain an individual.

    What the authors found "most disturbing" is that 3,600 (1.6%) of the cases involved the apprehension and detention of United States citizens by ICE.
    This President certainly can't change the law with a sweep of his pen, but he certainly has the power to end a program within his jurisdiction that is clearly not working.
    Stop lying to us Mr. President.  You do have the power to change the way business is being done, and it is clear that you have no interest in doing so.
    Shame on you, and shame on anyone who votes for you.
    Click here to read the full report.
  5. Bloggings on immigration insanity: Small business fined more than $170,000 over I-9 technicalities; Republican presidential candidates court Sheriff Joe Arpaio; By Roger Algase

    Two items in the October 18 ID show the extent to which immigration is being taken over by sheer insanity. One article reports that a small company in Washington State has been fined more than $170,000 as the result of an ICE investigation into I-9 irregularities. It appears that most, if not all, of the (admittedly numerous) I-9 violations were merely due to careless record-keeping, not any intent to evade the immigration laws.
    There did not seem to have been any pattern of hiring unauthorized immigrants. This raises an interesting historical question: in Salem, Massachusetts, did they also fine the witches before burning them? 
    Another item in the same ID issue states that GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain (of the electrified fence wing) is meeting with Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio to discuss immigration, following a similar meeting between Arpaio and Michele Bachmann, who advocates passing Arizona style anti-immigrant hate laws in every state. According to the same item, Republican front runners Mitt Romney and Rick Perry (of the GOP's "have a heart" wing) have also made calls to Arpaio.
    Among the many human rights violations which Arpaio has been accused of, one that stands out is his allegedly forcing immigration detainees to wear pink underwear. Pink was the color that gay inmates were forced to wear in Nazi concentration camps. Is this the person whom the Republicans are looking to as their kingmaker next year? One message from the GOP is coming across loud and clear: "If you are Latino, don't vote Republican."
    In fact, if many Republican state legislatures have their way with strict voter ID requirements, Latinos and other minorities will not be able to vote at all. This raises the question why President Obama is also eager to drive away Latino voters. Insanity, thy name is immigration.
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