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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Ariz. immigration law three months later: no arrests

    Ariz. immigration law three months later: no arrests

    By Alia Beard Rau, The Arizona Republic

    The nation's toughest immigration law has been in effect for three months. But after the federal courts prevented key portions from going into effect, it has failed to live up to both opponents' worst fears and supporters' greatest hopes.

    Immigrant-rights groups and major Arizona law-enforcement agencies say they've heard of no arrests made or citations issued using the statutes created under Senate Bill 1070, and no Arizona resident has taken advantage of the portion of the law that allows them to sue an official or agency that is not enforcing federal immigration law to the fullest extent.

    The law that went into effect on July 29 is a shadow of its original self. The day before, U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton halted four key provisions from going into effect, including the portion of the law that requires a police officer to verify a person's status when there is reasonable suspicion that the subject is an undocumented immigrant.

    Gov. Jan Brewer is appealing Bolton's ruling, and the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments from both sides Monday in San Francisco.

    But several state statutes created under SB 1070 went into effect on July 29. Individuals on both sides of the issue said after Bolton's ruling that the law still had teeth.

    New statutes

    The statutes allowed to go into effect do several things:

    • Require government officials and agencies to enforce federal immigration laws to the fullest extent permitted by federal law and allow Arizona residents to sue if the official or agency adopts a policy that violates this requirement.

    • Allow law enforcement to pull anybody over for any traffic violation if the driver is suspected of engaging in the "smuggling" of human beings for profit or commercial purposes. This could include stopping a driver for a secondary offense such as not wearing a seat belt, which in every other circumstance can be cited only if the driver is stopped for a separate primary violation such as speeding.

    • Make it a crime to pick up or be picked up as a day laborer if the vehicle is stopped on a road and impeding traffic.

    • Make it a crime to encourage an illegal immigrant to come to Arizona or transport, conceal, harbor or shield an immigrant if the person knows or recklessly disregards the fact the immigrant is in the country illegally. This offense has to be during the commission of another criminal offense.

    The American Civil Liberties Union and other immigrant-advocacy groups had said they were concerned overzealous law enforcement would misapply these remaining portions of the law, particularly the harboring and day-labor provisions.

    Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, who sponsored the bill, said in July that even though Bolton struck down parts of the law, the remaining portions still meant "the handcuffs come off law enforcement."

    On Thursday, he said that despite there having been no arrests under the law, it has succeeded at driving illegal immigrants out of Arizona and assisting law enforcement.

    "It is having the impact needed," he said. "I have talked to law enforcement, and they intend to use these laws."

    He said it has also succeeded at getting some law-enforcement agencies to change policies that before did not allow officers to question individuals such as witnesses and crime victims about their legal status.

    Law enforcement

    But even with the "handcuffs" removed, law enforcement agencies in Maricopa County, Cochise County, Tempe, Glendale, Peoria, Gilbert and elsewhere say they have made no arrests under the new statutes. Phoenix officials did not respond to a public-records request submitted Oct. 8 seeking arrest data.

    Mark Spencer, president of the Phoenix Law Enforcement Association, a union that supported the law, did not return calls seeking similar information.

    Immigrant-advocacy groups, which have been tracking the issue closely and encouraging individuals to contact them with reports of arrests or racial discrimination, say they have heard of no arrests anywhere in the state.

    Mike Tellef, a Peoria Police Department spokesman, said his department has decided to wait on future court rulings before enforcing SB 1070. He said the department has suspended its policy relating to the law.

    Glendale Officer Gerald Sydnor said his officers have been told that they can enforce the statutes of SB 1070 not halted by the court. But he said no officers have recommended charges for SB 1070 offenses.

    Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever said Bolton's decision to halt part of the law rendered the entire thing "moot."

    "With the law as it is now, not much is going to change," he said.

    Dever said the most beneficial part of the law was a portion the judge halted, one that required all law-enforcement officials to check an individual's immigration status. It wouldn't have changed what law enforcement in Cochise already does, he said, but it would have made the requirement uniform across the state.

    "Sanctuary policies suggest that, at some point in time, if you cross the finish line, you're home free," he said.

    Policy changes

    Pearce has said the most important portion of the law allowed to go into effect is the provision that requires local agencies to enforce federal immigration law. He said that will end the trend of "sanctuary cities" because it means cities cannot have policies that, for example, forbid an officer from questioning a witness or crime victim about his or her legal status.

    He has criticized several cities for having what he described as sanctuary policies, including Mesa and Chandler.

    In September, Mesa changed its policy to no longer forbid officers from questioning the immigration status of crime victims, witnesses, domestic-violence victims, individuals seeking medical assistance, and some juveniles.

    Chandler has been examining its policy but has not yet made any changes to it. The city allows officers to question all misdemeanor and felony suspects about their immigration status, but Police Chief Sherry Kiyler has said officers would not ask the status of crime victims, witnesses, civil-traffic violators or juveniles who are not charged with violent crimes.

    Community impact

    Gov. Jan Brewer declined to comment about the impact of SB 1070 during its first three months.

    Her spokesman, Paul Senseman, said only that her office doesn't have information available about arrests.

    Salvador Reza, a day-labor advocate for Puente, grass-roots immigrant-rights group, said the lack of arrests proves SB 1070 is nothing more than a political ploy. He said that law enforcement is still arresting and questioning immigrants about their legal status but that the officers are using existing laws and not SB 1070.

    "SB 1070 has not been used as a way to enforce the law in any way, shape or form," Reza said. "It was never needed."

    He said he also doesn't believe the law has been successful in its goal of "attrition through enforcement." He said immigrants are leaving Arizona because of the economy and lack of jobs, not because of fear of SB 1070.

    Lydia Guzman of the immigration-rights group Respeto said that although she has not heard of any arrests under SB 1070, she believes it has been successful in driving immigrants out of Arizona.

    "People are leaving the state," she said.

    Connie Andersen of Valley Interfaith Project said the Hispanic community felt a sense of relief after Bolton halted part of the law. But she said a general fear has lingered.

    "The population is less inclined than ever before to report crime, and we're hearing about escalations of criminal behavior in pockets where people feel they are unable to call police," Andersen said.

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/201 ... ater_N.htm
    NO AMNESTY

    Don't reward the criminal actions of millions of illegal aliens by giving them citizenship.


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  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    The law has been and will be very effective, and the fact that police agencies aren't telling immigration rights groups under what law they arrested someone is not surprising. Why would they claim they made an arrest under the Arizona immigration law when the state immigration law parallels federal immigration law which they by law hae the authority to arrest under?

    Silly immigration rights groups who didn't know that the AZ immigration law IS federal immigration law.

    You go Arizona! Keep up the great work! And it's A-OK with me for AZ police officers to claim any and all arrests they made of illegal aliens were made under federal immigration law instead of SB 1070. After all, all SB 1070 does is require them to arrest illegal aliens violating federal law under the authority of federal law, USC Title 8, Chapter 12 ... Section 1324 .... (c) to wit: "authority to arrest".

    "(c) Authority to arrest

    "No officer or person shall have authority to make any arrests for a violation of any provision of this section except officers and employees of the Service designated by the Attorney General, either individually or as a member of a class, and all other officers whose duty it is to enforce criminal laws."

    "and all other officers who duty it is to enforce criminal laws."

    http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/8/usc ... -000-.html

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  3. #3
    Senior Member gofer's Avatar
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    The population is less inclined than ever before to report crime
    This premise was originally conceived by LaRaza, published and distributed as a talking point. It has no basis in fact, since most would not report crimes anyway for other reasons such as retribution.

  4. #4
    Senior Member miguelina's Avatar
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    "SB 1070 has not been used as a way to enforce the law in any way, shape or form," Reza said. "It was never needed."

    He said he also doesn't believe the law has been successful in its goal of "attrition through enforcement." He said immigrants are leaving Arizona because of the economy and lack of jobs, not because of fear of SB 1070.
    Then there's no need to continue the frivolous lawsuits and the whining, is there? So what's the problem Sal?
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)
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