July 16, 2018 / Modified jul 16, 2018 3:39 p.m.

Judge: Trump Administration Must Give Asylum Seekers Due Process

The ruling means that the administration cannot use indefinite detention as a weapon to deter asylum seekers.

Trump profile President of the United States Donald Trump speaking at the 2018 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland. (PHOTO: Gage Skidmore, CC 2.0)

LISTEN

A federal Judge in Washington, D.C., has ruled that asylum seekers must get a parole review and that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) cannot indiscriminately hold those seeking asylum.

Last month, President Donald Trump tweeted, "When somebody comes in we must immediately, with no judges or Court Cases, bring them back from where they came."

But a federal judge in Washington has blocked the Trump administration, Homeland Security and ICE from jailing mass numbers of asylum seekers for months, or even years, without a case review.

The ruling applies to the Arizona border as well as places like Los Angeles and Philadelphia, where ICE is detaining asylum seekers.

The original case was brought against the Trump administration and the Department of Homeland Security by the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU charged that under direction from the Trump administration, immigration officials were detaining asylum seekers for months and up to two years, even after they were found to have a shown a legitimate "credible fear" that returning to their home countries could mean they would be seriously injured or even killed by either gangs or government forces.

Arizona constitutional scholar Robert McWhirter says noncitizens have constitutional rights.

"The Constitution starts with the words, 'We the people.' It doesn't start with the words, 'We the citizens,'" said McWhirter.

The ruling means the Trump administration cannot use indefinite detention as a weapon to deter asylum seekers.

By posting comments, you agree to our
AZPM encourages comments, but comments that contain profanity, unrelated information, threats, libel, defamatory statements, obscenities, pornography or that violate the law are not allowed. Comments that promote commercial products or services are not allowed. Comments in violation of this policy will be removed. Continued posting of comments that violate this policy will result in the commenter being banned from the site.

By submitting your comments, you hereby give AZPM the right to post your comments and potentially use them in any other form of media operated by this institution.
Arizona Public Media broadcast stations are licensed to the Arizona Board of Regents. Arizona Public Media and AZPM are registered trademarks of the Arizona Board of Regents.
The University of Arizona