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New ruling against government detention policy

Regardless of immigration status, people in the United States must be provided with due process of law. So, whether a resident is a U.S. citizen or a green card holder, or if that person is an immigrant with or without proper documentation, he or she should not be denied a chance to have a fair trial through the court system.

As many as 20 percent of the immigrants who are detained in the United States are in California, and these detentions often happen as a result of a policy that mandates it without allowing those people to have bond hearings. As a result, many undocumented immigrants have remained in custody and been denied the opportunity to challenge the cases against them while they awaited deportation, even when the alleged crime occurred years in the past.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has recently determined that a ban on this mandatory detention practice should stand. The original decision came as a result of class action litigation filed by Asian Americans Advancing Justice, the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California and Keker & Van Nest, which challenged the government actions.

In the United States, the federal government are bound to follow the laws, just as those who live in the country and those who stay here temporarily are. The court system is set up as a means of ensuring that people are not mistreated by those in authority. An immigrant who is illegally or legally detained may benefit from the advice of an attorney who may be able to provide assistance in preventing injustice.

Source: American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, "Mandatory Detention Struck Down in California and Other Western States; Thousands of Families Now Protected," Aug. 5, 2016

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