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Offbeat ACLU lawsuit accuses US of wrongfully denying asylum

00:55  08 august  2018
00:55  08 august  2018 Source:   msn.com

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HOUSTON — The American Civil Liberties Union says it sued the U.S. government Tuesday over its efforts to prevent immigrants from seeking asylum due to domestic and gang violence in their home countries.

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HOUSTON (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a class-action lawsuit accusing the U . S . government of broadly separating immigrant families seeking asylum .

The American Civil Liberties Union ( ACLU ) suit alleges the US government has violated due process for hundreds of asylum -seeking families by separating parents and children without a hearing and without showing the child would be endangered by staying with the parent.

The ACLU's lawsuit asks a judge to invalidate Attorney General Jeff Sessions' June 11 decision to restrict the kinds of cases that qualify for asylum. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of 12 parents and children who the ACLU says were wrongly found not to have a credible fear of return.

If Sessions' memo stands, the lawsuit argues, people "desperately seeking safety will be unlawfully deported to places where they fear they will be raped, kidnapped, beaten, and killed."

Asylum can be granted to someone who was persecuted in their home country or could be persecuted if forced to return. Thousands of people seek asylum each month at U.S. Customs and Border Protection stations along the southwest border. Most are from Central American countries torn apart by violence, gangs, and corruption.

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Washington (CNN) The ACLU filed a class-action lawsuit Friday charging the Trump administration with separating immigrant parents from children as they await asylum proceedings. The lawsuit , filed in the US District Court of the Southern District of California, accuses the government of "forcible

A civil rights group has filed a lawsuit accusing President Donald Trump’s administration of illegally imprisoning asylum seekers. The group says the detentions violate the US Constitution and break immigration laws . The American Civil Liberties Union ( ACLU )

Top officials in President Donald Trump's administration say the asylum process is being exploited by immigrants who are counting on passing the initial credible fear screening and being released into the country.

The new lawsuit, filed in Washington, widens the ongoing battle between the ACLU and the U.S. government over immigration policy. A federal judge in San Diego ordered the reunification of thousands of families separated under the Trump administration's zero-tolerance policy for border crossers, after the ACLU sued there earlier this year.

Sessions' June memo overruled a 2014 decision by the Board of Immigration Appeals that gave asylum status to a Guatemalan woman who fled her husband after what the board called "repugnant abuse." The board found that the woman qualified for asylum because she was a member of a particular social group — in this case, married women in Guatemala who could not leave their relationship.

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The lawsuit says officials on US -Mexico border have 'consistently and systematically' denied access to asylum seekers. 12 Jul 2017 23:26 GMT. Reports of people being denied an opportunity to seek asylum have grown [File: Carlos Barria/Reuters]. Immigrant advocacy groups sued the United States

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a class-action lawsuit on Friday accusing the U . S . government of separating immigrant families that seek asylum . Some administration officials claim that border agents unlawfully deny individuals seeking asylum at the U . S .-Mexico border.

Immigration courts and judges operate under the Justice Department, and Sessions can overrule the board. In this case, he said the board had erred.

Many asylum seekers "are leaving difficult and dangerous situations," Sessions said in a June speech. "But we cannot abandon legal discipline and sound legal concepts."

The decision had immediate impact.

Immigration lawyers say people who they expected would pass credible fear screenings began to fail them, and lawyers say immigration judges are signing off on more denials during appeals, effectively ending what could have been a years-long asylum process before it began.

The number of immigrants who didn't pass credible fear screenings rose in June, according to new statistics the government released Tuesday. Asylum officers denied about 13 percent of cases in June compared with 8 percent in May and an average of 10 percent during the previous fiscal year, according to data from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Among the people suing in the ACLU's lawsuit is a woman identified only by a pseudonym, Grace. The ACLU says Grace's partner beat her and her children, and sexually assaulted her and her daughter. Once, the ACLU says, her daughter suffered a miscarriage after he attacked her. The lawsuit says the police did not act when she contacted them.

The lawsuit says Grace was found not to have a credible fear of persecution. She remains in detention in Texas.

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Taxin reported from Santa Ana, California.

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