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Sessions limits U.S. judges’ ability to dismiss deportation cases

SAN FRANCISCO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions introduced new limits on the ability of immigration judges to terminate deportation cases on Wednesday, the most recent in a collection of selections to facilitate the removing of immigrants within the nation illegally.

United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks at Valor Survive and Thrive Conference in Waukegan, Illinois, U.S., September 19, 2018. REUTERS/Kamil Krzaczynski

Unlike the federal judiciary system, U.S. immigration courts fall underneath the Department of Justice and the lawyer basic can rewrite opinions issued by the Board of Immigration Appeals. Sessions, a Republican former U.S. senator appointed by President Donald Trump, has been unusually energetic on this apply in contrast to his predecessors.

In his most up-to-date determination, Sessions mentioned judges can solely terminate or dismiss cases in “specific and circumscribed” circumstances. Judges “have no inherent authority to terminate removal proceedings even though a particular case may pose sympathetic circumstances,” he mentioned.

The determination laid out particular circumstances underneath which immigration judges can terminate deportation proceedings, together with in cases the place the federal government can not show its case for removing. Judges can even terminate proceedings if the federal government asks for a dismissal or to enable an immigrant time for a ultimate listening to on a pending petition for naturalization when the matter includes “exceptionally appealing or humanitarian factors.”   

Having a deportation case terminated doesn’t confer authorized standing on an immigrant, however it does give them time to pursue different avenues of remaining within the nation legally. The Department of Homeland Security can place immigrants whose cases are dismissed again into deportation proceedings with a brand new charging doc.

“The decision is the next step in a concerted effort by the A.G. to undermine judicial independence and to minimize the role of judges in immigration court,” mentioned Kate Voigt, affiliate director of presidency relations on the American Immigration Lawyers’ Association.

Dana Leigh Marks, president emeritus of the National Association of Immigration Judges, mentioned the choice “shows again the amount of pressure being applied to judges to move cases forward toward removal as quickly as possible.”

The Department of Justice declined to remark.

Reporting by Kristina Cooke in San Francisco and Reade Levinson in New York; Editing by Tom Brown

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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