A recent Chicago Tribune article points out an ever growing issue in the United States. Under federal law, immigration authorities are prohibited from arresting and detaining United States citizens and are supposed to investigate the citizenship status of all detainees. But the Tribune articles points out that a growing number of American citizens that are being detained and sometimes even deported by ICE officials.
Since 2010, immigration advocates have represented over 11 United States citizens that have become entangled in legal battles with immigration officials despite being United States citizens. Once such case from New York involved an individual with disabilities that was mistakenly deported to Mexico. The ACLU sued the federal government and settled the case in 2011. Despite the eventual resolution in these cases, the problem still persists.
A Political Science professor that monitors immigration cases says that about 1% of all immigration court cases eventually get dismissed because the case involves a United States citizen. But the question remains as to why U.S. citizens are being detained. An immigration advocate says that the legal standards for ICE to stain someone are so low and woefully inadequate to protect United States citizens. ICE says that determining certain individual’s immigration status can be difficult and complicated at times which explains why some citizens may be detained. Until further protections are enacted, the possibility of U.S. citizens being detained by immigration officials remains a real threat for many citizens.
If you have questions about immigration status or immigration issues, you should contact a skilled immigration attorney.