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  1. #1
    MW
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    Immigration judges accuse Attorney General Jeff Sessions of interfering with deportat

    USA Today

    Immigration judges accuse Attorney General Jeff Sessions of interfering with deportation cases


    Alan Gomez
    10 hrs ago

    The union representing U.S. immigration judges filed a formal grievance against the Justice Department on Wednesday, accusing Attorney General Jeff Sessions of trying to dictate the outcome of deportation cases before a Philadelphia-based judge.

    DOJ responded by saying the judge himself is now under investigation for possible violations of unspecified "processes and practices."

    In its complaint, the National Association of Immigration Judges wrote that Judge Steven Morley had more than 80 cases removed from his docket because he was not finishing deportation cases fast enough.

    The problems started when Morley tried to provide government officials with more time to find Reynaldo Castro-Tum, a Guatemalan who entered the U.S. illegally in 2014 as a 17-year-old and had missed several immigration court appearances. According to the grievance, Morley argued that the government may have been using an unreliable address to find Castro-Tum, and he decided to close the case to provide the government more time to find him.

    In a rare move, Sessions intervened in the case directly. Unlike most federal judges, immigration judges fall under the DOJ's Executive Office of Immigration Review, meaning the attorney general oversees them and has the power to refer cases to himself.

    Sessions used the case as a basis to order that immigration judges no longer had the power to close most cases, as they had done in more than 350,000 cases over the past decade. That practice was used by the Obama administration to put many cases on hold so that immigration judges could focus more time on cases of undocumented immigrants with criminal records.

    In his order, Sessions shot down that practice in most cases and ordered Morley to make a decision in Castro-Tum's case within 14 days. When Morley continued delaying Castro-Tum's case, it was reassigned, along with dozens of other cases, to other judges. Castro-Tum was ordered to be deported last month "in absentia," meaning he was not present for the hearing.

    Ashley Tabaddor, a Los Angeles-based immigration judge and president of the National Association of Immigration Judges, said the decision to pull more than 80 cases from Morley's docket was a clear attempt to force the judge, and others, to do the bidding of DOJ prosecutors whose goal is to secure as many deportation orders as quickly possible.

    Tabaddor said the treatment of Morley reflects a broader problem of Sessions trying to undercut the independence of immigration judges and "transform" the position of judge into one of a law enforcement officer.

    "The most defining characteristic of a judge is that ability to be able to exercise independent decision-making authority," she said. "When the agency interferes in such a matter and takes a case away...it sends a message that somehow (a judge's) ability to preside over cases should be questioned."

    In a statement, the Executive Office for Immigration Review did not respond to the allegations contained in Wednesday's grievance, focusing instead on Morley himself. The statement said there is "reason to believe" that Morley has "committed potential violations of processes and practices" established by federal law and office policy.

    The statement did not specify what person or organization raised the concerns over Morley, but vowed to investigate the concerns "thoroughly." "We look forward to fully vindicating the issues surrounding this matter," the statement read.

    The grievance was filed as the Trump administration is trying to speed up deportations. There are more than 700,000 open immigration cases, a backlog that has prompted Sessions to try to hire more judges and prosecutors, especially along the southwest border with Mexico.

    Morley was appointed as an immigration judge by Eric Holder, the attorney general under President Barack Obama. Throughout the past six years, Morley denied 46.2 percent of asylum cases, which is lower than the national rate of 52.8 perent, according to data compiled by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/msn/immigration-judges-accuse-attorney-general-jeff-sessions-of-interfering-with-deportation-cases/ar-BBLFx28

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    According to the grievance, Morley argued that the government may have been using an unreliable address to find Castro-Tum, and he decided to close the case to provide the government more time to find him.
    Once "noticed", it is the defendant's responsibility to show up for the hearing on time and notify the courts of any address changes. It should be no different than a parolee moving and not notifying their probation officer of the change. Their freedom is immediately revoked! The same should be for aliens waiting a hearing. "No Show" is a default loss, unless they have a valid reason such as being hospitalized.

    "The most defining characteristic of a judge is that ability to be able to exercise independent decision-making authority," she said.
    That freedom is one big mistake! Judges are supposed to weigh the evidence before them and decide based only on law, not how they feel.

    Morley was appointed as an immigration judge by Eric Holder, the attorney general under President Barack Obama.
    That is a big red flag!
    Beezer, stoptheinvaders and MW like this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jtdc View Post
    Once "noticed", it is the defendant's responsibility to show up for the hearing on time and notify the courts of any address changes. It should be no different than a parolee moving and not notifying their probation officer of the change. Their freedom is immediately revoked! The same should be for aliens waiting a hearing. "No Show" is a default loss, unless they have a valid reason such as being hospitalized.
    Only illegals are exempt from laws, citizens must tow the line.
    They expect more of citizens. We can be fined if we change address and do not notify DMV.
    MW and Beezer like this.
    You've got to Stand for Something or You'll Fall for Anything

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