ICE still prowling outside courthouses: report
Federal Immigration and Custom
Enforcement (ICE) agents continue
to arrest immigrants in and
around court houses across New York,
according to data from the Immigrant
Defense Project (IDP).
So far this year, the IDP has tallied
112 incidents of courthouse operations,
including arrests and ICE agent sightings.
Of this number, 23 have occurred
in and around courthouses in Brooklyn,
22 in Queens, 12 in Manhattan,
10 in the Bronx and 2 in Staten Island,
according to IDP.
In April, the New York State Offi ce
of Court Administration issued new
rules that prevent federal immigration
agents from making arrests in courthouses
without a judicial warrant. IDP
claims that agents have disregarded
those rules, with 28 of the 112 reported
courthouse arrests occurring after
Since the new rules took effect, the
IDP reported, agents have arrested or
have been seen near a courthouse four
times in Brooklyn, eight in Queens, six
in Manhattan, three on Staten Island
and two in the Bronx. Outside of New
York City, agents have arrested or have
been spotted near a courthouse fi ve
Despite state efforts to stop them, ICE agents continue to arrest immigrants
at local courthouses, according to a report that the Immigrant
Defense Project announced Tuesday.
The nonprofi t announced its fi ndings
after including them in an amicus brief
fi led with the Southern District of New
AP PHOTO/GREGORY BULL, FILE
York in support of a lawsuit fi led by
state Attorney General Letitia James.
Her litigation, fi led in September, aims
to stop ICE courthouses arrests.
Forty other organizations joined IDP
in fi ling the amicus brief.
Immigration activists have argued
that ICE’s police force creates a culture
of fear. According to a survey that
IDP conducted of 1,000 immigrants of
family of immigrants currently dealing
with the court system, 60 percent said
that if they were a victim of a crime,
they would avoid going to court out of
fear of being arrested.
Moreover, 50 percent said that they
avoided calling the police because of a
fear of ICE intervention.
“The lawsuits, court rules, and community
opposition send a unifi ed message
that New York will not tolerate
ICE’s increased targeting of people
at courthouses,” added Alisa Wellek,
executive director of the Immigrant
Defense Project. “The federal government’s
systematic racist policies that
target Latinx and Black New Yorkers
and other communities of color is inhumane
and unjust and it’s time to put
a stop to it once and for all.”
During the fi rst two years of the
Trump administration, the nonprofi t has
documented a 1,700 percent increase
in ICE arrests and attempted arrests in
New York state.
The federal Department for Immigration
and Customs Enforcement did
not respond to a request for comment.
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