Immigration Law

Court Orders Reinstatement of DACA: Inland Empire v. Duke

Nicole Rodriguez, Newsweek, Dec. 2, 2017 - "The evening of February 12 began uneventfully for Los Angeles-area resident Jesus Alonso Arreola. The 23-year-old undocumented immigrant from Mexico began his shift as a Lyft and Uber driver and picked up a fare in San Diego.

The money for the trek three hours south would help pay his parents’ rent, care for his ailing sister and provide for his pregnant girlfriend, who was expecting the couple’s first child.

Arreola, who also worked as a cook at the famed Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood, was among the first young adults to receive special protection from deportation under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program enacted by the Obama administration in 2012. As long as he worked and avoided a criminal record, Arreola was supposed to be safe from the clutches of Border Patrol.

Arreola’s vehicle was swarmed by Border Patrol agents as his arrived to pick up his passengers. They accused him of human smuggling: The people he was meeting had crossed the U.S.-Mexico border illegally, agents told him.

“I kept thinking, ‘I didn’t do anything wrong. I didn’t smuggle anyone. I never even saw the people I’m accused of smuggling,’” Arreola wrote.

Arreola was eventually released with no criminal charges, but was stripped of his DACA status because he was issued a Notice to Appear (NTA) in immigration court for deportation proceedings. He also lost his jobs as a result.

A U.S. District Court judge for the Central District of California last week ordered the Trump administration to reinstate Arreola’s DACA status, ruling that the move violated the law."