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More than 300,000 Central American and Haitian Immigrants to Lose TPS: May Soon Face Deportation

New York Magazine reports that US Dept. of State has advised US Dept. of Homeland Security officials this week that the 300,000+ Central Americans and Haitians who are currently in the United States in a Temporary Protected Status will no longer be protected from deportation.  This announcement arrives days prior to a highly anticipated DHS announcement on a decision to renew said TPS program.

“Per a letter from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to DHS secretary Elaine Duke this week, the State Department believes that conditions in Central America and Haiti have now improved to the point that TPS designation is no longer necessary. The legally required assessment came as the DHS prepares to announce by Monday whether it will renew TPS protection for more than 60,000 Honduran and Nicaraguan immigrants in early January. Tillerson’s letter doesn’t bode well for them or for two other large groups of American residents: nearly 60,000 Haitian immigrants with TPS whose protection expires in late January, and almost 200,000 Salvadorans whose protection expires next March.

Some of these immigrants have been in the U.S. for as long as two decades, and many own homes and businesses. One study has estimated that TPS holders have almost 275,000 U.S.-born children in their families. Should the designations not be renewed, these immigrants would have at least six months to get their affairs in order and leave the country. If they chose to stay, they could face arrest and deportation.”

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Practice Advisory on Changes to Expedited Removal due to President Trump’s Executive Order on Border Security and Immigration Enforcement

The National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, the American Immigration Council, and ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project provide a practice advisory on how expedited removal has changed since President Trump issued the Executive Order on border security and immigration enforcement. This Practice Advisory addresses the coming expansion of expedited removal, who likely will be impacted, and possible ways to challenge an expedited removal order.

Download AILF’s Practice Advisory (PDF)

Congressional Research Service Report: “Prosecutorial Discretion in Immigration Enforcement: Legal Issues”

English: Seal of the United States Department ...

Seal of the United States Department of Homeland Security. (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

The latest CRS Report offers valuable information on Prosecutorial Discretion, and provides insight into how such Discretion will fit in with the different Comprehensive Immigration Reform plans currently being discussed in Washington.  An extract follows: Read More…

Deferred Action Process for Young People Who Are Low Enforcement Priorities


Over the past three years, this Administration has undertaken an unprecedented effort to transform the immigration enforcement system into one that focuses on public safety, border security and the integrity of the immigration system. As DHS continues to focus its limited enforcement resources on the removal of individuals who pose a danger to national security or a risk to public safety, including aliens convicted of crimes, with particular emphasis on violent criminals, felons, and repeat offenders, DHS will move to exercise prosecutorial discretion to ensure that enforcement resources are not expended on low priority cases, such as individuals who were brought to this country through no fault of their own as children, have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, or multiple misdemeanor offenses, and meet other key criteria.

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Frequently Asked Questions about ICE Policy Directive Number 11061.1, Facilitating the Return to the United States of Certain Lawfully Removed Aliens


I was ordered removed, and am scheduled to be removed soon. How will this affect my appeal of
my case, which is pending before the U.S. circuit court of appeals?

As explained in ICE Policy Directive Number 11061.1,
Facilitating the Return to the United States of Certain Lawfully Removed
Aliens, an alien who appeals his or her final order of removal to a federal
circuit court of appeals may continue to litigate his or her case after being
removed from the United States. Your removal will not affect your
right to continue to pursue your case before the court. Although you may be
abroad for the pendency of your case, the court of appeals that is currently
reviewing your petition for review will nevertheless be able to review and make
a decision on your case while you are not in the United States. In order to ensure
that you receive notice of the decision entered by the court in your case, you
should follow the court’s procedures for providing updated address and contact

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Georgia Legislature passes HB 87

On 4/14/11, the Georgia Legislature passed HB 87, an immigration enforcement bill that 

1. allows police to perform immigration status checks of criminal suspects
2. requires businesses to utilize E-Verify, and 
3. imposes harsh sentences for any individual using false documentation to obtain employment.

The Unauthorized Population Today


“Recent estimates from the Pew Hispanic Center and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) indicate that the number of unauthorized immigrants in the United States has remained unchanged at roughly 11 million since 2009.  This comes after a two-year decline of approximately one million that corresponded closely to the most recentrecession, which ran from December 2007 to June 2009.  Despite that decline, the new data make clear that the current population of unauthorized immigrants is very much part of the social and economic fabric of the country.  Three-fifths of unauthorized immigrants have been in the United States for more than a decade.  Unauthorized immigrants comprise more than one-quarter of the foreign-born population and roughly 1-in-20 workers.  Approximately 4.5 million native-born U.S.-citizen children have at least one unauthorized parent.  While the largest numbers of unauthorized immigrants are concentrated in California and Texas, there also are sizable unauthorized populations in Florida, New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Georgia, North Carolina, and Maryland.  In short, unauthorized immigrants who are already in the country have become integral to U.S. businesses, communities, and families.

The size of the unauthorized population has remained unchanged at roughly 11 million since 2009.”

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Separate and New Immigration Courts advocated by Lawyers

VIA NY Times

The American Bar Association called for an overhaul of the US Immigration Court system, citing immense backlogs and an “an overwhelmed system choked by an exploding caseload”

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Owner of Mandarin restaurant to be deported after jail


“The co-owner of a popular Jacksonville restaurant received a three-month sentence Monday for harboring illegal aliens and faces certain deportation to his native India.

Sanjit Kumar Rajak, who was head chef and manager of Cilantro Indian Cuisine in Mandarin, will complete his prison sentence in about a week because he has been behind bars since his January arrest. He agreed to a $5,000 fine.

His lawyer, Shawn Arnold, said he expects deportation proceedings to begin immediately, a bitter end for a successful businessman who lived a rags-to-riches story. Arnold said Rajak won’t be allowed to re-enter the United States for five to 10 years.

Rajak admitted hiring four illegal workers and leasing their Sunbeam Road apartment. He has no other criminal record.”

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Mistaken immigration raid?


Olga Savage said she went through a harrowing life-changing experience that might have been a total mistake.

The 68-year-old woman told Action 4 News that she heard a knock at her door Tuesday morning.

But before she had a chance to get up she said U.S. Immigration & Customers Enforcement (ICE) agents were inside her home.

“They came in with guns, grenades and holding their pistols,” Savage recalled.

When she asked them why they came into her home they allegedly responded, “Show us your papers.”

Savage complied by showing them documentation proving that she’s been a United States citizen for 40 years.

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Feds say Wash. immigration guards weren’t checked



SEATTLE (AP) — A privately run immigration lockup in Tacoma hired security guards without required preliminary background checks and then lied about it, according to authorities.

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Window closing for aliens with Florida criminal convictions to move to withdraw pleas that could leave them vulnerable to adverse immigration actions

Author: Tomislav D. Golik
Attorney, Leimbach & Sharma

Under the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA) convictions for certain categories of crimes carry with them the risk that the alien defendant may face removal proceedings or inadmissibility to re-enter the United States.  Under U.S. law, “convictions” are defined to include pleas of guilty or nolo contendere (no contest).  Even criminal offenses which have been pardoned or expunged are still considered convictions for immigration purposes.

Until 2006, the Florida Supreme Court held that an alien who was actually threatened with deportation as a result of a plea of guilty or no contest had two years to move to set aside their plea.  Further, that two year period did not begin to run until the alien first learned, or should have had knowledge of, the threat of deportation based on the plea.

That changed on October 26, 2006, when the Florida Supreme Court ruled in State v. Green that the two year limitations period starts to run from the date the judgment and sentence become final.  In the interests of fairness, however, the court further ruled that the Green decision would not apply retroactively.  Any alien whose criminal case was finalized prior to October 26, 2006, still had the two year period to file for post conviction relief from their plea.  That window closes on October 26, 2008.

If you are an alien who entered a plea of guilty or no contest to a crime in the State of Florida, you should contact an attorney immediately to see if your plea could subject you to deportation proceedings.  This is especially true of those who entered pleas to felonies, but there are many criminal offenses classified as misdemeanors that could also serve as grounds for removal of a resident alien or visa holder.  It is not always clear from the language of the INA which crimes could subject an alien to deportation.  Consult an attorney that understands grounds for deportation and inadmissibility to make sure you understand the consequences of your criminal plea.

Even if you no longer reside in Florida, a criminal plea entered there may still subject you to deportation.  If you find that your Florida plea can subject you to deportation, you still need to determine whether grounds exist for challenging it.  An experienced Florida Criminal Defense Attorney can help determine whether grounds exist for moving to withdraw a plea and how much time remains to do so.  Any person fearing they may be affected by a criminal plea in Florida should contact an attorney immediately, as that attorney may need considerable time to do any necessary research and obtain the appropriate records to review a case. 

‘It turned out I was the bad guy’

Via The Chicago-Sun Times

Corina Turcinovic came to the U.S. 17 years ago to care for her disabled fiance. Now that he has died, she’s getting kicked out.