A.G. Schneiderman And Fellows AGs File Suit Against U.S. Department Of Homeland Security Over Immigration Records

News from Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 17, 2017

Attorney General’s Press Office / 212-416-8060
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A.G. SCHNEIDERMAN AND FELLOWS AGs FILE SUIT AGAINST U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY OVER IMMIGRATION RECORDS

 

 10 AGs Sue Trump’s DHS For Failing To Disclose Records Related To Immigrant Detention And Deportation 

NEW YORK – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today joined a coalition of ten Attorneys General in filing a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for failing to disclose records concerning the detention and deportation of immigrants. Today’s suit follows a similar, unfulfilled request for information sent by the same Attorneys General in June 2017 to several law enforcement agencies.

“Immigrant communities in New York and across the country are living in fear because of the Trump administration’s draconian policies," said Attorney General Schneiderman. “The federal government’s total lack of transparency forces immigrant New Yorkers into the shadows and undermines state and local efforts to keep our communities safe.”

In June, Attorney General Schneiderman and nine other Attorneys General issued numerous Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to obtain details regarding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, arrests and detentions of individuals at sensitive locations such as schools and jobsites, and ICE/CBP detainer requests databases. Those requests went unanswered and subsequently led to the complaint filed today in court.

The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court for Massachusetts, alleges that the states are requesting records to which they have a legal right to and that the federal agencies have not responded to the requests within the statutorily prescribed time limit.

In the initial request, the Attorneys General reference local and national media reports of the deportation of individuals approved for DACA, individuals meeting with federal immigration officials to discuss their status, and even U.S. citizens. 

Today’s brief was led by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey and filed by the Attorneys General of California, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Washington and the District of Columbia.

Earlier this year, Attorney General Schneiderman released legal guidance for so-called “sanctuary” jurisdictions, and issued a report debunking the Trump administration’s bogus legal and public safety claims against cities and towns that choose to limit their participation in federal immigration enforcement.