Saturday, March 30, 2013

Warrantless Arrest Provisions of Indiana State Immigration Enforcement Law Bites the Dust

Bender's Immigration Bulletin provides the latest news on the legal challenge to Indiana's state immigration enforcement law. 

A federal court has issued a permanent injunction blocking portions of Indiana's immigration enforcement law and declared it unconstitutional. Judge Sarah Evans Barker found that that the law "runs afoul of the Fourth Amendment" because it authorizes state and local law enforcement officers to "effect warrantless arrests for matters that are not crimes." The Indiana law permitted local law enforcement officers to make warrantless arrests of people not in possession of certain immigration-related documents, even though the possession of those documents is not a crime.

Judge Barker had previously issued a preliminary injunction against the law. 

The decision is in the case of Buquer v. City of Indianapolis.

As previously reported on ImmigrationProf, the Indiana Attorney General had conceded that, in light of the Supreme Court's decision in Arizona v. United States, parts of the Indiana law could not survive. 

The ACLU of Indiana was assisted on this case by Angela Adams of the firm Lewis & Kappes, P.C. and attorneys from the Immigrants' Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union as well as the National Immigration Law Center.  The state will forego an appeal of the ruling.

Put simply, Indiana's state immigration enforcement law suffered the same legal fate of similar laws in Arizona, Georgia, Alabama, and other states.  It would appear that states should think twice before passing such laws, which costs many thousands of dollars to defend (unsuccessfully).


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