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Over the years, we’ve seen repeated examples of how Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) abuse their authority when it comes to treating immigrants and protecting individual privacy. This week, two articles from the New York Times showed CBP unrestrainedly using their authority within the 100-mile zone; meanwhile, enforcement officials are reportedly detaining Central American minors without providing prompt court dates.
According to Ron Nixon at the New York Times, CBP is operating on property without permission, setting checkpoints deep within the U.S., asking U.S. citizens for their papers, and more “under a little-known federal law that is being used more widely in the Trump administration’s aggressive crackdown” on immigration.
Most Americans are unaware that two-thirds of the U.S. population – about 200 million people – live within the 100-mile border zone where Border Patrol is authorized to conduct deportation enforcement operations, according to the ACLU. CBP is allowed to conduct warrantless searches of people and property within this zone, an authority that has been deemed abusive and “unreasonable” even by the conservative National Review.
Below are some of the New York Times’ examples of how CBP has used and overused this authority under the Trump Administration:
CBP’s wide-ranging reach is especially important considering that the Trump Administration wants to hire thousands more ICE and CBP officers — even though Politico once called the Border Patrol “America’s most out-of-control law enforcement agency”. A series of damning reviews and federal reports suggest Border Patrol corruption is underreported.
View “Know Your Rights” material and learn more about the 100-mile border zone here.
A pending lawsuit from the New York Civil Liberties Union alleges that federal agencies are detaining minors indefinitely and unjustifiably.
The Trump Administration has begun detaining certain immigrant minors who have fled Central America to seek asylum in the U.S., claiming that they are involved with gangs. But some of these minors have been held for months without a court hearing, while others remain detained even after they are determined not to be a safety risk. Evidence of their gang ties have been scant as well, and sometimes consist of little more than the fact that they have tattoos.
Several instances of immigrant minors being detained indefinitely include:
Said Donna Lieberman, the executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, the drawn-out detention of young immigrants is “a witch hunt” and the consequences for the minors is “huge, irreparable harm.”