Migrants who have been in the United States for less than two years could be deported without seeing a judge according to a new Trump administration policy. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and others have filed a lawsuit asking that the new expedited powers policy not go into effect. The suit claims that it could lead to citizens in Florida or elsewhere being deported by mistake. In 2000, a woman was deported to Jamaica despite being a United States citizen.
The woman had just returned home from visiting relatives when she had been taken into custody. If the policy is allowed to stand, migrants caught anywhere in the country could be deported without due process. Currently, only those found within 100 miles of the border can be deported without going to court first. Furthermore, the current policy only applies to those who have been in the country for less than two weeks.
An attorney for the ACLU claimed that deporting people without any sort of review process can lead to arbitrary decisions. Individuals could be sent back home under expedited removal rules even if they have applied for asylum and have passed the credible fear review. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) says that the expanded policy will reduce the backlog of pending immigration cases.
Those who are involved in removal proceedings may not necessarily be required to leave the United States. An attorney may assert that a person is a citizen or permanent resident who is allowed to be in the country. It might also be possible to assert that an individual did not commit a crime that would trigger such proceedings. Migrants may be allowed to remain in the United States for humanitarian reasons even if they cannot legally be granted asylum.