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Immigrants' Rights Organizations Sue Department of Homeland Security For Public Accountability About Deportation Program That Sidesteps Legal Process For Immigrants

Publication Date: 
November 12, 2008
Fresno Bee

Professor Jayashri Srikantiah is quoted in a Fresno Bee article about a complaint filed by a coalition of immigrants' rights organizations including the Immigrants' Rights Clinic about the deportation of nearly 100,000 people without benefit of a hearing:

Today a coalition of immigrants' rights organizations asked a federal judge to compel the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to disclose information about a program under which it removes non-citizens from the United States without hearings before immigration judges. The program, called "stipulated removal," has resulted in the removal of over 96,000 non-citizens since its inception.

The Stanford Law School Immigrants' Rights Clinic (IRC), together with the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), the ACLU of Southern California (ACLUSC) and the National Lawyers Guild of San Francisco (NLGSF) filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to gain access to agency records about stipulated removal from DHS and its sub-agencies, including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The lawsuit also seeks access to records from the Department of Justice (DOJ) and its Executive Office of Immigration Review (EOIR).


"DHS is running a federal program that has resulted in the deportation of almost 100,000 people without legal hearings, and yet the public knows very little about the program," said Jayashri Srikantiah, director of the Immigrants' Rights Clinic at Stanford Law School. "Stipulated removal raises serious due process concerns because immigrant detainees may not know that they are signing away their rights, and no judge ever speaks to the detainee to ensure that they understand the process."