State of Washington v. Greyhound Lines, Inc.

State of Washington v. Greyhound Lines, Inc., No. 20-2-01236-32 (Spokane Cnty. Sup. Ct., consent decree filed Sept. 26, 2021)

In April 2020, the Attorney General of Washington (Bob Ferguson) filed a lawsuit against Greyhound Lines challenging its practice of allowing U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents on its buses to conduct warrantless and suspicionless immigration sweeps. Greyhound failed to warn customers of the sweeps, misrepresented its role in allowing the sweeps to occur on its buses, and subjected passengers to unlawful discrimination based on race, color, or national origin. The case was set for trial on September 27, 2021.

On September 26, 2021, the parties filed a consent decree which requires Greyhound to pay $2.2 million and to enact a number of corporate reforms to end its unlawful conduct. For example, Greyhound must establish and implement a clear policy that denies CBP agents permission to board its buses without warrants or reasonable suspicion in the state of Washington. The Attorney General has stated that the $2.2 million will be used to provide restitution to those passengers who were detained, arrested, or deported as a result of the immigration sweeps on Greyhound buses.

Documents:

Counsel: Lane Polozola, Yesica Hernandez, Brian J. Sutherland, and Emily C. Nelson (Washington State Attorney General’s Office)

Contact: Yesica Hernandez | Washington State Attorney General’s Office | civilrights@atg.wa.gov

Villalobos et al. v. United States

Villalobos et al. v. United States, No. 0:21-cv-02233 (D. Minn., filed Oct. 11, 2021)

Plaintiff Kerlin Sanchez Villalobos and her younger sister are suing the United States for the severe abuse and mistreatment they suffered while they were held in immigration custody. In June 2019, they entered the United States seeking safety from violence and persecution in Honduras, and were arrested by CBP agents. At the time, Kerlin was sixteen and her sister was fourteen. After their arrest, Kerlin and her sister were taken to a CBP detention facility in Clint, Texas and held there for nine days, after which they were forcibly separated and transferred to different group homes operated by Southwest Key Programs, Inc.

At the facility in Clint, Texas, CBP officers and government contractors mistreated Plaintiffs in a variety of ways, including physically assaulting them, depriving them of adequate food and water, denying them access to necessary medical care and medication, forcing them to watch the mistreatment of other children, and forcing them to care for younger children. Officers forced the girls to lift their shirts to be searched in a non-private setting, and threw away medicine one of the sisters brought with her to treat a recent injury. According to the siblings, officers ordered them to control the younger children who were crying because they were separated from their families. One of the sisters was injured by an officer who kicked her repeatedly. Additionally, the Clint facility was reported to have subpar sanitation for the number of children held there, and an MSNBC video from 2019 revealed children caged like animals. According to an ABC news report, staff had no training on caring for children.

In spite of initially assuring the sisters they would not be separated, officers traumatically separated the sisters without explanation and transported them to separate group homes. Despite prior reports of abuse at the Texas group homes where the sisters were held, the U.S. government has continued to place children there. In total, Kerlin spent twenty days in detention, and her sister spent twenty-nine days. Plaintiffs seek compensatory damages for negligence, negligent undertaking, battery, and assault under Texas law via the Federal Tort Claims Act.

Documents:

Complaint

Counsel: Ian Bratlie,Teresa Nelson, Clare Diegel, and Paul Dimick (ACLU of Minnesota); Edgar Saldivar, Bernardo Rafael Cruz, and Angre Segura (ACLU of Texas); Jillian Kornblatt, Michael D. Stinson (Dorsey & Whitney LLP)

Contact: Claire Diegel | ACLU of Minnesota | 612-274-779 | cdiegel@aclu-mn.org

Doe et al. v. Mayorkas et al.

Doe et al. v. Mayorkas et al., No. 1:21-cv-11571-IT (D. Mass., filed Sept. 24, 2021)

Plaintiffs Jane Doe and her two 10-year-old sons are citizens of Haiti who entered the United States in September 2021 to seek asylum. They were among the thousands of Haitians forced to remain for days under the Del Rio International Bridge. Later, Plaintiffs were transported to San Antonio, Texas to be processed for expulsion pursuant to Title 42. As of September 24, 2021, they remained in CBP custody, and their expulsion under Title 42 was believed to be imminent.

Plaintiffs’ complaint asserts that the U.S. government’s Title 42 expulsion policy violates the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), Title 42, the Administrative Procedure Act, the U.S. Constitution (equal protection and due process), and the United States’ nonrefoulement duty under international law. Plaintiffs request, among other things, that the court enjoin their expulsion under Title 42 and order Defendants to process their asylum claims in accordance with the INA.

As of November 2021, the government released the clients into removal proceedings and paroled them. Plaintiffs plan to file for voluntary dismissal.

Documents:

Petition for Writ of Mandamus and Complaint

Counsel: Amy Maldonado | Law Office of Amy Maldonado

Bridget Cambria | Cambria & Kline, P.C.

Susan B. Church | Demissie & Church

Contact: Amy Maldonado | 517-803-2870 | amy@amaldonadolaw.com

Goldhar v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection et al.

Goldhar v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection et al., No. 1:21-cv-23197-BB (S.D. Fla., filed Sept. 3, 2021)

Plaintiff Gaby Or Goldhar, a citizen of Israel, challenges U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)’s wrongful cancellation of her B-2 visitor visa in 2019. When entering the United States through the Miami International Airport on July 15, 2019, a CBP officer cancelled Ms. Goldhar’s B-2 visa based on an erroneous determination that she had accrued unlawful presence during her prior visits to the United States and thus was inadmissible. Ultimately, CBP acknowledged its mistake and admitted Ms. Goldhar into the United States after waiving the visa requirement on a Form I-193. However, because the visa in her passport was physically invalidated, Ms. Goldhar has been unable to travel to the United States ever since. Although she was invited to apply for a replacement visa, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly restricted U.S. consular operations abroad, resulting in extremely long wait times for visa processing. Ms. Goldhar wishes to attend her grandson’s bar mitzvah in Florida in January 2022, but she likely will be unable to obtain a new B-2 visa by then.

Ms. Goldhar claims that CBP’s wrongful cancellation of her visa violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), as it constituted agency action that was “arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of

discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with the law.” 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A). Among other things, she requests that the district court order CBP to “immediately take such correction action as may be appropriate, including, but not limited to, reversing the cancellation of [her] B-2 visa” and “treating it as a valid entry document through its stated expiration date.”

As of October 27, 2021, Defendants have not yet filed an answer or any responsive motion.

Documents:

Complaint

Counsel: David Elliott Gluckman | McCandlish Holton PC

Tammy Jean Fox-Isicoff | Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff, P.A.

Contact: David Gluckman | 804-775-3826 | dgluckman@lawmh.com

Djumaev v. U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation et al.

Djumaev v. U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation et al., No. 1:21-cv-05016-DG-MMH (E.D.N.Y., filed Sept. 8, 2021)

Plaintiff Akram Djumaev, a lawful permanent resident (LPR) of the United States, commenced this action against various federal agencies, including U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), alleging violations of his rights under the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), and the Administrative Procedure Act (APA). Mr. Djumaev is a resident of Chicago and a citizen of Uzbekistan who has been a lawful permanent resident since 2013. In January 2016, he traveled to Uzbekistan for the purpose of visiting family and getting engaged. After going through the security checkpoint at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, four law enforcement agents approached him and interrogated him, specifically asking whether he knew anyone in Turkey, Syria, or Afghanistan. Without consent or warrant, the agents then searched and confiscated his smartphone without providing any reason for doing so. After an hour of questioning, Mr. Djumaev was allowed to board the plane to Uzbekistan. However, the agents did not return his smartphone to him. In fact, to date, they still have not done so.

When Mr. Djumaev attempted to return home to the United States in March 2016, the airline attendant at the airport informed him that he would not be able to board—presumably because he had been placed on the U.S. government’s “No Fly List.” That same day, Mr. Djumaev contacted the U.S. embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, and filed a Traveler Redress Inquiry Program (TRIP) complaint with DHS shortly afterward.

Two months later, Mr. Djumaev was instructed to visit the embassy for an interview. When he arrived, he was taken to a windowless room and interrogated by Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and State Department agents. The agents allegedly stated that Mr. Djumaev was a “threat to the U.S.” without any explanation or justification for that claim. They also suggested—again, without providing any basis—that they knew he had terrorist affiliations and had been involved in criminal activity. The agents repeatedly coerced Mr. Djumaev to admit that he was guilty and threatened that he would be arrested and imprisoned upon returning to the United States. After about two hours of interrogation, the agents told him that he had only two choices: either return to the United States. and be imprisoned, or agree to sign a form stating that he would not return to the United States. The agents handed him a pre-filled Form I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status. Although Mr. Djumaev had no desire whatsoever to relinquish his LPR status, he signed the form, believing that he had no other choice. During this process, the agents never informed Mr. Djumaev of his rights.

After that incident, Mr. Djumaev attempted twice to return to the United States, but he was denied boarding each time. Although LPRs placed on the No Fly List are eligible for a one-time waiver to return to the United States, the embassy has refused to issue such a waiver to Mr. Djumaev. Later, Mr. Djumaev retained counsel and challenged the validity of the I-407, but the government has not provided any response. As a result of Defendants’ actions, Mr. Djumaev has been unable to return to the United States for over five years and has suffered significant financial and emotional harms.

Mr. Djumaev’s complaint alleges that Defendants violated his due process rights under the Fifth Amendment by placing him on the No Fly List without adequate notice or opportunity to challenge the decision, as well as by coercing him to abandon his LPR status. The complaint further asserts that Defendants’ actions violated his rights under the INA (depriving him of LPR status and excluding him from the United States without charge or a removal hearing) and the Fourth Amendment (unlawful search and seizure of his smartphone and its private contents). Finally, Mr. Djumaev claims that Defendants’ actions were “arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, otherwise not in accordance with law,” in violation of the APA. He seeks declaratory and injunctive relief, and requests, among other things, that the district court issue an order voiding the improper I-407 form and directing Defendants to restore his LPR status.

Defendants’ answer is due November 30, 2021.

Documents:

Complaint

Counsel: Jamila Marjani Hall & Sharnell S. Simon | Jones Day, Atlanta

Ramzi Kassem & Naz Ahmad | Main Street Legal Services, Inc.

Khalid v. Garland, et al.

Khalid v. Garland et al., No. 1:21-cv-02307-CRC (D.D.C., filed Aug. 31, 2021)

Plaintiff Saad Bin Khalid brought this action for declaratory and injunctive relief against various federal agencies, including U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), claiming that the U.S. government has wrongfully placed him on its “No Fly List” which indefinitely bars him from flying to, from, or within the United States.

Mr. Khalid is a 27-year-old U.S. citizen of Pakistani descent. He was first designated by the U.S. government as a “known or suspected terrorist” in 2012, when he was still a minor. As a result, Mr. Khalid has been subject to multiple interrogations and intrusive searches by CBP and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officers. He learned that he had been placed on the No Fly List in 2019, when he tried to return to the U.S. from Karachi, Pakistan, but was prohibited from boarding his flight. He has been unable to return to the U.S.—his home country—for nearly two years due to his placement on the No Fly List. Mr. Khalid claims that the U.S. government has failed to provide any reason or justification for placing him on the list, or a fair process for challenging that placement.

The complaint alleges violations of Mr. Khalid’s rights under the Fifth Amendment (substantive and procedural due process), the First Amendment (retaliation for refusing to acquiesce to interrogations), the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (burden on his exercise of religion), and the Administrative Procedure Act. Mr. Khalid seeks a declaratory judgment that Defendants have violated his rights, as well as an injunction which, among other things, requires Defendants to remove Mr. Khalid from any watchlist or database that burdens his ability to enter the United States.

As of October 26, 2021, Defendants have not yet filed an answer or any responsive motion.

Documents:

Counsel: Council on American-Islamic Relations

Contact: Gadeir Abbas | gabbas@cair.com | 202-742-6420.

State of Texas and State of Louisiana v. United States

State of Texas and State of Louisiana v. United States, No. 6:21-cv-00016 (S.D. Tex., filed Apr. 6, 2021); 21-40618 (5th Cir., filed Aug. 20, 2021)

On April 6, 2021, the State of Texas and the State of Louisiana commenced this action seeking to enjoin the enforcement of interim immigration enforcement priorities outlined in two memoranda issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) (dated Jan. 20, 2021) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) (dated Feb. 18, 2021). Noting DHS’s limited resources and inability to respond to all immigration violations, those memos announced that the agency would prioritize enforcement against individuals who are purported to pose a threat to national security, individuals apprehended at or near the border while attempting to unlawfully enter the United States on or after November 1, 2020, and individuals convicted of an “aggravated felony” and recently released from criminal detention. Texas and Louisiana argue that these enforcement priorities are unlawful because:

(1) They violate the mandatory detention statute, 8 U.S.C. § 1226(c), as well as § 1231(a)’s requirement that noncitizens with final orders of removal be detained during the removal period;
(2) They unconstitutionally direct executive officials not to enforce federal immigration laws, in contravention of Article II’s “Take Care” Clause;
(3) They constitute arbitrary and capricious agency action in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA);
(4) DHS and ICE issued the interim enforcement priorities without following the notice-and-comment procedures required by the APA; and
(5) The memos were issued without adherence to the notice and consultation requirements contained in DHS’s cooperation agreements with Texas and Louisiana.

On August 19, 2021, the district court granted a nationwide preliminary injunction, concluding that the memos violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) and the APA. It thus enjoined the government from following the interim priorities outlined in the challenged memos. The U.S. government then sought an emergency stay pending appeal as well as a temporary administrative stay. The Fifth Circuit granted a temporary administrative stay and heard oral argument on the motion for emergency stay pending appeal.

On September 15, 2021, the Fifth Circuit published its decision granting in part and denying in part the government’s motion to stay the preliminary injunction. While staying much of the injunction, the Fifth Circuit left narrow portions of the order in place. Specifically, the court declined to stay the injunction only insofar as it restrained the Biden Administration from using the Priorities Memos to guide the discretion of immigration officials in deciding whether to release two specific categories of immigrants: (1) those subject to the mandatory provision under 8 U.S.C. §§ 1226(c)(1) against whom immigration officials have issued a detainer and (2) those with final removal orders and subject to mandatory detention under § 1231(a)(2). The injunction is stayed pending appeal in all other respects.

On September 30, 2021, DHS completed its review of its policies and practices concerning immigration enforcement and issued a new memorandum establishing its revised enforcement priorities. The new guidance is set to become effective on November 29, 2021, thereby superseding the challenged interim priorities. In light of this development, the government filed a motion for abeyance on October 6, 2021, arguing that the case would likely become moot before the court reaches a decision on merits. The government requested that the court hold the case in abeyance until the new priorities go into effect, and also that the court stay the briefing schedule pending resolution of the motion.

Texas and Louisiana filed a response opposing the motion for abeyance as well as a petition for rehearing en banc, arguing that the panel had erred by misconstruing the relevant INA provisions and also by failing to evaluate whether the challenged memos violated the APA. In the district court proceedings, the States filed an amended complaint, alleging that DHS’s September 30 memorandum “suffers from the same legal infirmities” as its earlier memos. They also filed a motion to postpone the effective date of the recent memorandum, or, in the alternative, to preliminarily enjoin its enforcement.

As of October 26, 2021, both the government’s motion for abeyance and the States’ petition for rehearing en banc are pending before the Fifth Circuit, while the district court is awaiting the government’s opposition to the States’ motion to postpone (due November 12, 2021). 

Documents:

Counsel: Brian M. Boynton, Jennifer B. Lowery, Sarah E. Harrington, H. Thomas Byron III, Michael Shih, and Sean Janda | U.S. Dep’t of Justice

Contact: Department of Justice

United States v. Gustavo Carrillo-Lopez

United States v. Gustavo Carrillo-Lopez, No. 3:20-cr-00026-MMD-WGC (D. Nev., filed June 25, 2020)

On June 25, 2020, Gustavo Carrillo-Lopez was indicted on one count of being a deported noncitizen present in the United States in violation of 8 U.S.C. § 1326(a) and (b) (Section 1326). On October 19, 2020, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez moved to dismiss his indictment on the grounds that Section 1326 violates the equal protection guarantee of the Fifth Amendment under Village of Arlington Heights v. Metropolitan Housing Development Corp., 429 U.S. 252 (1977). In his motion to dismiss, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez argued that because Section 1326 was enacted with a discriminatory purpose and has a disparate impact on Latinx persons, the law is unconstitutional; as such, the Court must dismiss the indictment.

In his briefing, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez presented extensive historical evidence about the racist origins of Section 1326, including how it was first enacted at the height of the eugenics movement and how the “Undesirable Aliens Act of 1929” was conceived, drafted, and enacted by white supremacists out of a belief that the “Mexican race” would destroy the racial purity of the United States and that Mexicans were “poisoning the American citizen.” Although the statute was recodified in 1952, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez argued that the 1952 reenactment did not cleanse Section 1326 of its racist origins and was likewise motivated by discriminatory intent. Moreover, he argued that Section 1326 disproportionally impacts Mexican and Latinx defendants, given that the overwhelming number of Border Patrol arrests along the southern border are of Mexicans or people of Latinx origin.

On January 22, 2021, the Court held oral argument on the motion to dismiss, and on February 2, 2021, the Court held an evidentiary hearing. At the evidentiary hearing, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez presented the testimony of two experts. Professor Kelly Lytle Hernandez, an expert on policing in immigration and criminalization of migration, testified extensively on the racist origins of the 1929 act and that “the illegal re-entry provision of the 1929 law was intended to target Latinos.” Professor Benjamin Gonzalez O’Brien, an expert on political science, immigration policy, race, and public policy, testified to the historical link between the 1929 and 1952 codifications. Following the evidentiary hearing, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez submitted a post-hearing brief outlining for the Court how the 1952 recodification of Section 1326 made illegal reentry penalties even harsher and expanded grounds for deportation, all with the knowledge of the law’s disparate impact and over a presidential veto calling out the bill’s racism. Mr. Carrillo-Lopez explained that the 1952 Congress did not reenact the illegal reentry provision despite its racist origins – it reenacted it because of them. In light of these facts, Mr. Carrillo-Lopez argued he had met his burden under the Arlington Heights test.

On August 18, 2021, the Court issued an order granting Mr. Carrillo-Lopez’s motion to dismiss, finding that because Section 1326 was enacted with a discriminatory purpose, the law has a disparate impact on Latinx persons, and that because the government failed to show that Section 1326 would have been enacted absent racial animus, Section 1326 violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fifth Amendment. As such, the Court ordered the United States to dismiss Mr. Carrillo-Lopez’s indictment and release him from federal custody. 

On August 19, 2021, the United States filed a notice of appeal to the Ninth Circuit.

Documents:

Counsel: Federal Public Defender of Nevada

Contact: Lauren Gorman, Assistant Federal Public Defender | Lauren_Gorman@fd.org

Texas and Missouri v. Biden

Texas & Missouri v. Biden, No. 2:21-cv-00067-Z (N.D. Tex., filed Apr. 13, 2021)

Within hours after President Biden’s inauguration, the Biden administration suspended new enrollments into the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico program (also known as the “Migrant Protection Protocols” or “MPP”), which forcibly returned certain people seeking asylum at the southern U.S. border to Mexico, where they had to survive dangerous conditions during the pendency of their immigration proceedings in U.S. immigration courts. The program was notoriously a humanitarian disaster – as a result of the policy, people seeking asylum were murdered, raped, kidnapped, extorted, and compelled to live in squalid conditions. They also faced significant procedural barriers to meaningfully presenting their legal claims for protection.

On April 13, 2021, the states of Texas and Missouri (Plaintiffs) filed suit in the Northern District of Texas, arguing that the Biden administration’s January 2021 statement suspending new enrollments into MPP “functionally end[ed] the MPP” program and was arbitrary and capricious in violation of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) given the “huge surge of Central American migrants, including thousands of unaccompanied minors, passing through Mexico in order to advance meritless asylum claims at the U.S. border.” Plaintiffs also argued that the Biden Administration’s decision to suspend MPP violated both the Constitution and an agreement between Texas and the federal government.

On May 14, 2021, Plaintiffs moved for a preliminary injunction. However, before the briefing was complete, DHS issued a new memo on June 1, 2021 formally terminating MPP. The Court concluded that the June 1 memorandum mooted Plaintiffs’ original complaint (which had focused on the January 2021 pronouncement), but allowed Plaintiffs to amend their complaint and file a new motion seeking to enjoin the June 1 memo. Plaintiffs did so. On June 25, 2021, Defendants filed their response to Plaintiffs’ preliminary injunction motion, and Plaintiffs filed their reply on June 30, 2021.

On July 22, 2021, the Court held a consolidated hearing and bench trial on the merits, and the parties then filed supplemental briefs on the scope of relief available to Plaintiffs. On August 13, 2021, the Court issued an order concluding that Plaintiffs were entitled to relief on both their APA and statutory claims and issued a nationwide injunction permanently enjoining Defendants from implementing or enforcing the June 1 memo, vacating the June 1 memo in its entirety, and ordering Defendants “to enforce and implement MPP in good faith until such a time as it has been lawfully rescinded in compliance with the APA and until such a time as the federal government has sufficient detention capacity to detain all [noncitizens] subject to mandatory detention under Section 1255 without releasing any [noncitizens] because of a lack of detention resources.” The Court’s reasoning was rooted in a mistaken understanding of 8 U.S.C. § 1225(b)(2)(A) and its determination that MPP “demonstrated operational effectiveness” — a finding based on Trump Administration statements and flawed data analysis and which ignored hundreds of pages of record evidence detailing the dangers MPP respondents had experienced in Mexico.

The Court stayed its order for seven days to allow the federal government time to seek emergency relief from the Fifth Circuit. On August 16, 2021, the Biden administration sought an additional stay from the District Court, which the District Court summarily denied two days later. The Biden administration then appealed to the Fifth Circuit. The American Immigration Council, Center for Gender and Refugee Studies, Human Rights First, and Southern Poverty Law Center, filed an amicus brief in support of the government, asking the Fifth Circuit to prevent the reinstatement of MPP and arguing that the District Court’s order rests on inaccurate facts about the purported effectiveness of MPP in deterring migration and reducing meritless asylum claims. The ACLU and ACLU of Texas filed a separate amicus brief in support of the government primarily focusing on the District Court’s misinterpretation of 8 U.S.C. § 1225(b)(2)(A).

On August 19, 2021, the Fifth Circuit denied the government’s request for a stay in a published decision that wholly adopted as true the Trump administration’s claims about the effectiveness of MPP in deterring migration and ignored the mountainous evidence refuting such claims. The decision, however, stated that the administration does not have to restart MPP at any particular time, just “in good faith” (without defining the term) and clarified that the government “can choose to detain” someone in accordance with § 1225, so long as the government does not “simply release every [noncitizen] described in § 1225 en masse into the United States.”

On August 20, 2021, the Biden administration filed an application to stay the District Court’s injunction and for an emergency administrative stay with the Supreme Court. That same day – just minutes before the injunction was to go into effect – Justice Alito granted an emergency stay of the injunction until 11:59 pm EDT on August 24, 2021, to allow the full Court to consider the application. On August 23, 2021, the ACLU and ACLU of Texas filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court in support of the stay application, again addressing the lower courts’ deeply flawed premise that the federal government must subject all people seeking asylum apprehended at the border to mandatory detention or return them to Mexico under MPP.

On August 24, 2021, the Supreme Court denied the government’s stay request in a 6-3 decision, stating that “[t]he applicants have failed to show a likelihood of success on the claim that the memorandum rescinding the Migrant Protection Protocols was not arbitrary and capricious.” The decision, however, did not endorse the states’ incorrect claims that the government is actually required to return people to Mexico under the immigration statutes. That same day, DHS issued a statement saying that the Department “respectfully disagrees with the district court’s decision,” have appealed that order, and “will continue to vigorously challenge it.” However, the Department stated that “[a]s the appeal process continues . . . DHS will comply with the order in good faith.”

On September 23, 2021, Plaintiff States filed a motion to enforce the preliminary injunction and expedite discovery, citing delayed implementation of MPP and bad faith on the part of the government. The government responded that Plaintiff States have not met their burden of proof to demonstrate that the government is not acting in good faith to implement the injunction. The government filed their reply at the Fifth Circuit on October 19, 2021.

On October 29, 2021, DHS issued a memorandum terminating MPP again. In light of the termination memo, the administration filed a motion with the Fifth Circuit in Texas v. Biden stating that the appeal of the injunction requiring them to re-start MPP in good faith was now moot and requesting that the court vacate the district court’s preliminary injunction and remand or, alternatively, to stay the appeal while the case is remanded. On November 1 2021, the states filed an opposition to the administration’s claim of mootness and request for vacatur or stay and remand, and the Fifth Circuit heard oral arguments from both parties the following day.

Documents:

Compliance Reports:

DHS Memorandum:

Counsel for Amicus: ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project; ACLU Foundation of Texas; American Immigration Council; Center for Gender & Refugee Studies; Human Rights First; Southern Poverty Law Center

National Immigration Litigation Alliance et al. v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection

National Immigration Litigation Alliance et al. v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection, No. 1:2021-cv-11094 (D. Mass., filed July 1, 2021)

Since 2019, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has engaged in the practice of expelling from the United States migrants who recently gave birth, along with their U.S. citizen infants, often without birth certificates. CBP has even expelled individuals from the United States who were in active labor. The National Immigration Litigation Alliance, Al Otro Lado, and the Haitian Bridge Alliance (Plaintiffs) submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request on March 18, 2021 to CBP seeking records relating to policies, guidance, or statistics regarding the treatment of pregnant people in CBP custody, people in CBP custody who have given birth within the United States within the last six months, U.S. citizen children in CBP custody who are under the age of six months, and non-U.S. citizen children of parents in CBP custody while their parent is giving birth at a U.S. hospital or other medical facility. Plaintiffs sought these records to better understand the scope and extent of CBP’s practice of expelling migrant parents and their infant children without considering the merits of their asylum applications.

When CBP failed to produce any responsive records or provide any other substantive response to the request, Plaintiffs filed suit on July 1, 2021. CBP filed their answer on August 13, 2021.

Documents:

Counsel: Proskauer Rose LLP; National Immigration Litigation Alliance; Al Otro Lado; Haitian Bridge Alliance

Contact: Trina Realmuto, National Immigration Litigation Alliance | trina@immigrationlitigation.org

Additional Links: