Immigration Law

American Citizen Sues Over Immigration Arrest

Caitlin Dickerson, New York Times, July 5, 2017 - "Immigration lawyers in Miami-Dade County are challenging its practice of jailing people on behalf of federal immigration authorities, in a case that could test the Trump administration’s attempts to pressure so-called sanctuary cities and counties.

In a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Federal District Court in Miami, lawyers representing a local resident, Garland Creedle, argued that the county had violated his Fourth Amendment right against unlawful seizure. 

[A]fter Mr. Creedle, 18, posted bail in March in a domestic dispute case, which was later dropped, he was held in custody overnight on the suspicion that he was an undocumented immigrant.

The detainer was not only unconstitutional, Mr. Creedle’s lawyers said, but also uncalled for. Mr. Creedle was born in Honduras but gained United States citizenship through his father, who is also a citizen. The government let him go once it realized the mistake.

“It goes to show just how sloppy this is,” said Rebecca Sharpless, a lawyer representing Mr. Creedle and the head of the University of Miami Law School’s immigration clinic. “What immigration does is check a box on a boilerplate form saying they have probable cause to hold someone in custody, and that is supposed to be constitutionally sufficient to detain them.” “That’s what we’re saying is wrong,” she said.

The case could test an argument that many immigration lawyers and sanctuary cities have made: that detainers may violate the Fourth Amendment because they do not carry the same burden of proof as, say, an arrest warrant signed by a judge."