Supreme Court upholds government power to detain immigrants with - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Supreme Court upholds government power to detain immigrants without bail

Posted: Updated:
NBC -

WASHINGTON — Immigrants who face possible deportation can be held by the federal government for months or even years without the chance to go to court and seek bail, a bitterly divided U.S. Supreme Court said Tuesday.

The court rejected an appeals court ruling that said immigrants who've been detained must be allowed a bond hearing every six months. Justice Samuel Alito, who wrote Tuesday's decision, said the appeals court reading of federal law is implausible, amounting to a rewriting of the relevant statutes.

Nothing in the text of those laws "even hints that those provisions restrict detention every six months," he wrote. Instead, the law gives immigration authorities time to determine whether an immigrant presents a danger "without running the risk of the alien's either absconding or engaging in criminal activity before a final decision can be made."

Tuesday's ruling applies to any immigrant, including those who entered the U.S. legally or who are seeking asylum.

In a sign of how passionately the court's liberals disagreed, Justice Stephen Breyer summarized their dissent in the courtroom. "Liberty has included the right of a confined, unconvicted person to seek release on bail," he said.

Concluding that the majority interpreted the law mistakenly, Breyer said, "I would find it alarming to believe that Congress wrote these statutory words in order to put thousand of individuals at risk of lengthy confinement all within the United States but all without hope of bail."

He was joined in dissent by Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor. Elena Kagan did not participate in the case because of an undisclosed conflict, most likely stemming from her work on the issue as solicitor general during the Obama administration.

The law was challenged by Alejandro Rodriguez, an immigrant from Mexico who was detained for three years without a bond hearing while the government considered deporting him because of convictions for joyriding and drug possession.

He was ultimately released and allowed to remain in the United States. But the ACLU said thousands of people are held without bond, as he was, in conditions resembling jail confinement at detention centers.

Civil rights groups condemned Tuesday's ruling.

"How can we as a nation, remain a haven for the prosecuted when we lock up asylum seekers — who are in this country legally to escape violence — for prolonged periods of time without access to an immigration court custody hearing?" asked Eleanor Acer of Human Rights First.

While Tuesday's ruling said the appeals court wrongly interpreted the laws at issue, it sent the case back for the court to consider whether the statues, when properly understood, are unconstitutional.

Breyer, in his dissent, said the Supreme Court should have taken the case to decide that very issue. 

WEEKLY CIRCULARS
  • NewsMore>>

  • For the first time, Facebook spells out what it forbids

    For the first time, Facebook spells out what it forbids

    Tuesday, April 24 2018 5:46 AM EDT2018-04-24 09:46:06 GMT
    Tuesday, April 24 2018 2:12 PM EDT2018-04-24 18:12:46 GMT
    (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File). FILE - In this March 29, 2018, file photo, the logo for Facebook appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York's Times Square. For the first time, Facebook is making public, on Tuesday, April 24, its detailed gu...(AP Photo/Richard Drew, File). FILE - In this March 29, 2018, file photo, the logo for Facebook appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York's Times Square. For the first time, Facebook is making public, on Tuesday, April 24, its detailed gu...
    For the first time, Facebook spells out how it decides whether to delete your posts.More
    For the first time, Facebook spells out how it decides whether to delete your posts.More
  • Georgia drivers aggressive? New study says yes

    Georgia drivers aggressive? New study says yes

    Tuesday, April 24 2018 2:04 PM EDT2018-04-24 18:04:39 GMT

    Georgia ranked among the top states with the most aggressive drivers in a new study.

    More

    Georgia ranked among the top states with the most aggressive drivers in a new study.

    More
  • Opioid treatment gap in Medicare: methadone clinics

    Opioid treatment gap in Medicare: methadone clinics

    Tuesday, April 24 2018 3:56 AM EDT2018-04-24 07:56:11 GMT
    Tuesday, April 24 2018 1:58 PM EDT2018-04-24 17:58:31 GMT
    (AP Photo/Kevin D. Liles, File). FILE - In this March 7, 2017, file photo, the CEO of a methadone clinic holds a 35 mg liquid dose of methadone in Rossville, Ga. The drug is the oldest and most effective of approved medications used to treat opioid add...(AP Photo/Kevin D. Liles, File). FILE - In this March 7, 2017, file photo, the CEO of a methadone clinic holds a 35 mg liquid dose of methadone in Rossville, Ga. The drug is the oldest and most effective of approved medications used to treat opioid add...
    Opioid overdoses killed 1,354 Americans ages 65 and older in 2016, but Medicare doesn't cover the oldest proven treatment for opioid addiction: methadone.More
    Opioid overdoses killed 1,354 Americans ages 65 and older in 2016, but Medicare doesn't cover the oldest proven treatment for opioid addiction: methadone.More

Weather

Powered by Frankly