August 2, 2017

Baker response to SJC’s ICE detainer ruling decried by ACLU, immigrant group

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Antonio Caban / State House News Service

Gov. Charlie Baker

BOSTON — A push from the Baker administration to respond to a Supreme Judicial Court ruling and reinstate a policy allowing state and local police to cooperate, on a limited basis, with federal immigration detainer requests met stiff resistance from civil liberties activists who questioned the constitutionality of the governor’s actions.

As foreshadowed last week, Gov. Charlie Baker filed legislation Tuesday that would allow state and local police to honor Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainer requests for individuals already in state custody on criminal charges or for sentences related to past violent crimes.

The proposal from the Baker administration comes a week after the state’s highest court ruled state law did not allow for law enforcement in Massachusetts to hold defendants at the request of the federal government for immigration violations if they had no other reason to keep the person in custody.

The bill was immediately chastised by ACLU of Massachusetts as “constitutionality suspect because it attempts to authorize state and local law enforcement to detain people without due process.”

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