US Supreme Court Might Mess Up Trumpâ€™s Plans for Mass Deportation
The US Supreme Court will be answering question of whether persons who are detained for more than half a year can have a right to a bond hearing; specifically regarding deportation cases.
Currently lower courts decide whether those detained should be temporarily released post bond payment. Electronic monitoring is always an option in these cases because of safety concerns by the court.
This over-reaching authority has been challenged because of cases such as Alejandro Rodriquez who was convicted of joyriding in 1988 and was scheduled for deportation even though this conviction is not a deportable offense.
Rodriquez was detained for 36 months, but in the end won his permanent resident status.
Alex Lora, a Brooklyn resident who was born in the Dominican Republic and brought to the US when he was seven years old, was barraged by multiple vehicles and a dozen Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents a week before Thanksgiving in 2013 because he was once arrested (but ultimately not charged) with cocaine possession.
However this series of events triggered a deportation of Lora even though his arrest was not a deportable offense because he was not convicted of the prior accusation of drug possession.
Lora spent nearly 6 months detained in a New Jersey jail by ICE and in 2016 he is still “fighting to stop his deportation”.
For those who come to the border seeking asylum or are lawful permanent residents, the deportation efforts made by the US government are cut and dry. For the immigrant, their chances of remaining in the US are greater with 40% of permanent residents and 70% of asylum seekers being able to legally remain in America.
But in the interim, these people remain in detention centers which are not much nicer than prison facilities where the dress code is colored jumpsuits, movement is highly restricted, and the residents live in cells or barracks.
Visitations with family are conducted through glass separating the detainee and the rest of the world.
In 2001 the Supreme Court decided that detention, imprisonment and the like are protected by the Constitution; while civil advocates maintain that indefinite detention of immigrants is a violation of the fifth amendment which guarantees the right to “due process of law”.
In this instance, the court system has confirmed that “persons” mentioned in this amendment includes immigrants as well as US citizens.
President elect Donald Trump has further complicated this issue with his promises to “get the people that are criminal and have criminal records — gang members, drug dealers” and deport them.
Trump estimates that the initial wave of deportations will encompass 2 to 3 million people.
According to the president elect, these people are drug dealers and “bad hombres”; however mixed into this group are people who have simply violated traffic laws and other harmless offenses that could land them in jail for a small sentence, but ultimately put their names on Trump’s “registry” and scheduled for deportation.