Thursday, October 17, 2019

Judge threatens to hold Session in contempt after attempted deportation

Yesterday a federal judge threatened to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions in contempt after discovering that the Trump administration attempted to transfer a woman and her daughter out of the country while an appeal hearing for their deportation was underway.

U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan granted a request from the ACLU for an emergency order to halt the removal of immigrants seeking asylum from domestic abuse and gang violence after he learned the government had put a plaintiff in the case and her daughter on a flight back to Central America.

The ACLU, which is challenging Sessions’ decision to no longer grant asylum to the victims of domestic abuse and gang violence, said the government had assured the court on Wednesday no plaintiff in the case would be deported before midnight. “This is pretty outrageous,” Sullivan said, according to the Washington Post. “That someone seeking justice in U.S. court is spirited away while her attorneys are arguing for justice for her?

The DOJ and attorneys for the ACLU had reportedly agreed to postpone the hearings for Carmen until 11:59 p.m. on Thursday in order for the parties to argue the case in court. But ACLU attorneys were told that Carmen and her daughter had been taken from a family detention center in Texas, and were headed to the airport in San Antonio on Thursday morning for a flight out of the U.S.

The newspaper reported that Sullivan, an appointee of former President Clinton, mandated that the government “turn the plane around” after ruling in favor of the ACLU’s petition to stay removal.

“We are thrilled the stay of removal was issued but sickened that the government deported two of our clients — a mom and her little girl — in the early morning hours. We will not rest until our clients are returned to safety” Jennifer Chang Newell, the managing attorney of ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, who argued the case in court, said in a statement.

THE HILL