Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is named in lawsuit
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
Young illegal immigrants' dream could turn into a nightmare thanks to a new lawsuit just filed in federal court.
A group of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents are trying to stop the Obama administration from allowing young illegal immigrants to remain in the U.S. legally.
The Obama administration announced in June it will stop deporting thousands of young illegal immigrants who meet certain criteria as part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
The federal lawsuit is trying to stop that from happening.
The lawsuit, which was filed by 10 ICE agents, claims that the feds new policy forces ICE agents to violate federal law and is an unconstitutional use of executive power.
The complaint also objects to the policy of "prosecutorial discretion" which directs agents to focus their attention on illegal immigrants who are dangerous criminals.
Chris Crane is one of the ICE agents leading the lawsuit.
"Right now we are being ordered to follow what we believe to be unlawful orders," said Crane. "As a result we're actually putting the public at risk and our officers at risk. We're actually releasing people that we shouldn't be releasing."
One of the attorneys representing the ICE agents is Kris Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state who helped write SB1070, Arizona's controversial immigration enforcement law.
"The order of June 15, where (Janet) Napolitano tries to grant an executive amnesty to dream act aliens breaks federal law," said Kobach. "We are asking the judge to issue an injunction and prohibit the directive of June 15 from being enforced and allow these agents to place illegal aliens in removal proceedings as federal statute commands them to do."
Dulce Matuz heads up the Arizona Dream Act Coalition.
She said that the latest lawsuit is another attempt to make a political statement in a heated election year.
"I just think this is a political pawn and I'm tired of being used by both parties," said Matuz.
Copyright 2012 KPHO. (Meredith Corporation) All rights reserved.
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