The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) was charged with a class action lawsuit allegedly illegally arresting immigrants through third-party contractors.
The lead plaintiff is a 48-year-old woman named Gabriela Solano. She has been imprisoned for 22 years and has just been released from custody.
The lead plaintiff, who is set to be free this March, filed the lawsuit in February 2021 at the California Northern District due to fear that she will also be illegally arrested as an immigrant.
The lawsuit was charged against leaders of the Los Angeles and San Francisco ICE agency field offices.
The Lead Plaintiff
According to the lawsuit, Gabriela Solano was from Mexico. Solano came to the United States when she was two years old. At eight years old, she became a legal permanent resident of the United States.
The plaintiff, a domestic violence survivor, was imprisoned when she was involved in a shooting and robbery incident.
At 26 years old, Gabriela Solano worked as a driver for her abusive ex-partner.
During this time, her passengers conducted a botched robbery where a pedestrian was shot and killed.
ICE Detainer Request
Gabriela Solano has been locked up for 22 years for a murder charge. Recently, the California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla has identified her as fit to be released. Her tentative release date was set for March 15.
During Solano’s time in prison, she was able to earn two degrees. She has also undergone more than 1,000 hours of rehabilitative classes. In addition to this, the plaintiff has worked as an office clerk for 12 years.
The lawsuit states that the plaintiff plans to reunite with her family and work as a civic translator once released.
The lawsuit declares that Gabriela Solano has received a detainer request from the U.S. ICE agency.
According to the request, the agency has plans to hinder Solano’s release from state custody.
The lawsuit alleges that the ICE agency has been utilizing third-party contractors, like the G4S Secure Solutions Inc., since 2016.
The private contractors arrest inmates from California to delay their release due to immigration enforcement.
The arrest is made without the supervision of an ICE immigration officer. After the arrest, individuals are transferred to the ICE agency and are put behind bars again.
The plaintiff fears that the ICE agency will also arrest her thru a private contractor.
Private Contractor Arrests
The lawsuit argues that the practice of arresting immigrants through third-party contractors is illegal and breaches federal laws. The unlawful arrest has allowed private contractors to apprehend immigrants despite their lack of proper training.
The lawsuit complains under the Immigration and Nationality Act that private security cannot conduct immigration-related arrests. However, immigration officials have ignored this.
Attorney Jenny Zhao, Solano’s representative, alleges that the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitations coordinates with the ICE agency regarding the schedule of prisoners who will be released so that private contractors can arrest them.
The lawsuit states that the ICE agency has an existing contract with G4S until 2023.
The lawsuit aims to seek a ruling that will ban the ICE agency from using third-party contractors to arrest immigrants.
Editor’s Note On ICE’s Illegal Immigrant Arrest Lawsuit:
This article is published to inform you of the latest class action lawsuit filed against the U.S. ICE Agency for allegedly using third-party contractors to arrest immigrants illegally.
What are your thoughts on this piece? Have you heard of someone who the ICE agency arrested thru privately hired security?
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