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A Conversation on Immigration The Ohio State University Proportionality: The Struggle for Balance in Immigration Law Michael J. Wishnie William O. Douglas.

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Presentation on theme: "A Conversation on Immigration The Ohio State University Proportionality: The Struggle for Balance in Immigration Law Michael J. Wishnie William O. Douglas."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Conversation on Immigration The Ohio State University Proportionality: The Struggle for Balance in Immigration Law Michael J. Wishnie William O. Douglas Clinical Professor of Law Yale Law School

2 Part I: Struggle Immigration Politics in Danbury, New Haven, Hartford, and East Haven

3 The Danbury Mark Boughton, only Republican mayor of major Connecticut city, leads anti- immigrant campaign against new Ecuadoran population Police harass day-laborers and Ecuadoran volleyball games, Mayor seeks 287(g) MOU

4 Arrest September 19, 2006 – Danbury police officer disguised as contractor collects three loads of day-laborers, drives them to parking lot where other officers and 3 ICE agents arrest then question 11 men. Taken to Danbury Police HQ for booking, but charged with no criminal offenses Then taken to ICE in Hartford, served NTAs, no-bond set for each, before transfer to MA

5 Aftermath Community protest in Danbury Clinic and private counsel file emergency bond motions. 4 bond out in Boston, rest transferred to Texas while motions pending Eventually, 9 of 11 men bond out and return to home and families Clinic files suppression motions, litigates removal cases to Second Circuit

6 Resolution Community groups file state and federal FOIA actions, secure records for defense of removal cases, depose ICE officials, win $16K in fees Nine men file civil rights action. Settle in 2011 for $650,000 ($400,000 from Danbury, $250,000 from United States) ICE agrees to deferred action and work authorization for men still in US

7 New Haven Prologue: Elm City Resident Card Winter : community meetings, suggestion of ID card Spring 2005: Students draft “A City to Model” on behalf of Unidad Latina en Accion and Junta for Progressive Action Fall 2005: Mayor endorses municipal ID proposal Dec 2006: Police Order – don’t ask/tell/arrest June 4, 2007: BoA overwhelmingly approves municipal ID

8 The Raids June 6 and 11, 2007 Mostly early morning arrests in private homes 32 persons in all 5 with old orders 27 bystanders (“collaterals”); all Latino ICE declares it will return in days to continue operation

9 Bond June – 5 persons post full bond; motions filed for nearly all rest of 22 bond-eligible persons Motions adjudicated, total bonds due reduced from $350,000 to $185,000 St. Rose, ULA, Junta, GAVA raise bond funds

10 Forestalling ICE return Active collaboration among community groups, church, city Demand for ICE investigation of alleged misconduct by agents June 11 – Congressional letter; Sec. Chertoff announces suspension of ICE enforcement in New Haven

11 Queue for Elm City Resident Card July 2007

12 Immigration Court 3 motions to reopen: 1 in absentia order vacated, client released on bond, eventually wins A/S; 1 in absentia order declared legal nullity; second in absentia order for same client vacated based on asylum claim & changed country conditions, client released on bond, wins W/H; 1 MTR asylum case denied by BIA, CA4 PFR dismissed; 2d MTR denied, PFR dismissed; D.Conn. mandamus, I-130 granted; client released on order of supervision; ICE joins third MTR, BIA grants, IJ terms; application for A/S pending with CIS 17 motions to suppress; evidentiary hearings in all 17 cases, fall 2008; IJ requests ICE testimony in 6 cases; ICE refuses; IJ denies 12 motions, grants 5

13 BIA appeals 5 motions to suppress granted, BIA affirms all 12 MTS denied 1 client proceeds to asylum hearing, wins 1 client departs 10 clients appeal to BIA, of whom 7 win order vacating, remanding – 3 terminated – 4 pending [3-4 likely to be terminated] 3 affirmances, of whom – 2 clients file PFRs in CA2 – 1 client departs

14 FOIA cases Documents obtained by Nov 30 include Pre-operation plan (Nov 6) between State Police and ICE between AUSAs and ICE Effect on ICE-State Police cooperation?

15 Policy Advocacy “Collateral Damage” FOT report Feb 2009 – Front page, NYT – Hundreds of articles/editorials – ICE abandons FOT quotas w/in days Washington Colala rule, June 2011

16 Federal Civil Rights Suit Damages action filed fall 2009 by 11 Plaintiffs District Court denies MTDs in large part Supervisory Defendants file interlocutory appeal (Qualified Immunity) in CA2

17 Settlement Announced Feb. 14, 2012 Immigration Relief or Termination of Removal Proceedings Money Damages: $350,000

18 Hartford On behalf of coalition of community groups, draft and advocate strongest confidentiality protection in nation In 2008, Hartford Common Council passes and mayor signs “don’t ask/don’t tell/don’t arrest”

19 East Haven Decades-long history of police violence and racial profiling against African-Americans, including 1997 shooting death of Malik Jones In 2008, increasing reports of police harassment of Latino shopkeepers, residents, and motorists January 2009, St. Rose of Lima Church in New Haven asks clinic to assist in documentation

20 Arrest & Investigation Feb 2009 Fr. James Manship arrested filming harassment of Latino store-owners Spring 2009 charges dismissed, documentation converted to complaint to US DOJ Civil Rights Division Fall 2009 DOJ announces it has opened investigation into allegations of anti-Latino profiling and violence

21 Intenstifying scrutiny St. Rose litigates multiple FOIA actions, uses data to analyze traffic stops, release report 2010: DOJ releases preliminary findings; next day chief is put on administrative leave; civil rights action filed 2011: federal grand jury convened; former Republican mayor re-elected; first act is to reinstate Chief Gallo

22 Federal intervention Dec 2010 DOJ Criminal Rights Division final report finds pattern and practice of racial profiling, gives 60 days to negotiate plan Jan 2011 Four officers indicted, arrested; “taco” comment Civil rights action stayed St. Rose calls for appointment of special prosecutor to review prosecutions since 2008 based on arrests made by indicted officers

23 State-level efforts In-state tuition passed 2007, but Gov. Rell vetos; passed again 2011, Gov. Malloy signs Push for (1) driver’s licenses (2) financial aid for undocumented students and (3) occupational and professional license reform in 2012, all tabled for 2013 S-Comm launched Feb 2012, challenged in class-action habeas and by coalition, Gov agrees to make CT first state in nation to disregard detainers, policy released Mar 2012

24 Part II: Balance Proportionality is the notion that the severity of a sanction should not be excessive in relation to the gravity of an offense. The principle is ancient and nearly uncontestable, and its vitality is well established in numerous areas of criminal and civil law, in the United States and abroad.

25 Proportionality in Criminal Law Case-by-case review Step 1: Inference of gross disproportionality? Step 2: Comparative analysis Categorical review Characteristics of offender (youth, mental incapacity) or offense (nonhomicide). Graham v. Florida (2010) (no life without parole for juvenile, nonhomicide offenders).

26 Proportionality in Punitive Damages BMW v. Gore (1996). Courts must look to: 1.Reprehensibility of the underlying conduct 2.Ratio of punitive damages to harm to plaintiff and other victims (compensatory damages) 3.Comparison of punitive damages award to other civil and criminal penalties that could be imposed for similar conduct. State Farm v. Campbell (2003): “[F]ew awards exceeding a single-digit ratio between punitive and compensatory damages, to a significant degree, will satisfy due process.”

27 What constitutes punishment for proportionality purposes? “The notion of punishment, as we commonly understand it, cuts across the division between the civil and the criminal law.” United States v. Halper (1989). A “civil sanction that cannot fairly be said solely to serve a remedial purpose, but rather can only be explained as also serving either retributive or deterrent purposes, is punishment, as we have come to understand the term.” Id. Compare United States v. Ursery (1996) (civil forfeiture not punishment for Double Jeopardy Clause) with United States v. Bajakajian (1998) (civil forfeiture is punishment subject to proportionality review under Excessive Fines Clause)

28 Removal as Punishment “[D]eportation is an integral part... of the penalty that may be imposed on noncitizen defendants who plead guilty to specified crimes.” Padilla v. Kentucky (2010). Removal of LPRs “bristles with severities.” Harisiades v. Shaughnessy (1952). Termination of LPR status serves retributive and deterrent purposes, not solely remedial Removal of non-LPRs deprives one of social citizenship in service of retributive goals

29 Re-entry Bars as Punishment First instituted as deterrent. Immigration Act of Congress intends bars to serve retributive and deterrent goals: “[T]he one strike-and-you’re-out amendment will attach a real penalty to those who have crossed our borders illegally... it will prove to be a very effective deterrent.” Rep. Marge Roukema (R-NJ) (discussing Tate Amendment in IIRIRA debate). Dada v. Mukasey (2008). Grant of voluntary departure “allows an alien...to sidestep some of the penalties attendant to deportation.” Re-entry bar first listed.

30 Case-by-Case Review in Immigration Law Step one: Inference of gross proportionality E.g., young mother of six USC children who escaped two abusive marriages. “Simply put, this case calls for more mercy than the law permits this Court to provide.” Martinez v. U.S. Att’y Gen. (11th Cir. 2011). Step two: Comparative analysis Other immigration sanctions (short jail sentences, modest civil & criminal fines) General enforcement practices. Penalties for underlying criminal conduct

31 Categorical Review in Immigration Law Characteristics of offenders: DREAMers, mentally ill, those vindicating civil and labor rights Characteristics of the offense: some agfels Courts could also recognize a statute of limitations modeled on the registry statute. 8 U.S.C. § 1259.

32 Proportionality Review by IJs and BIA INA § 240(c)(1)(A): “At the conclusion of the proceeding the immigration judge shall decide whether an alien is removable from the United States.” Canon of constitutional avoidance compels interpretation of statutes to avoid constitutional difficulty Construction of INA that permitted disproportionate removal violates canon

33 Proportionality Review by IJs and BIA Court has construed INA to incorporate substantive due process norms, notwithstanding plenary power doctrine. Clark v Martinez (2005); Zadvydas v. Davis (2001); U.S. v. Witkovich (1957)

34 Objections Plenary Power Doctrine Court appears to be de-emphasizing doctrine and has interpreted INA to incorporate due process requirements. As-applied challenges may not implicate sensitive foreign affairs and national security concerns. Continuing Offense LPRs would otherwise have legal status No different from termination of removal proceedings for undocumented immigrants. Lack of Comparative Metrics Exist and can be developed.

35 Conclusion Proportionality as useful organizing principle for constructing immigration laws for 21 st century Reclaiming narrative space, and demanding stories be heard, recorded, and considered Reclaiming meaningful judicial review


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