ICE used warrantless traffic stops and racial profiling to arrest more than 100 people

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Illinois today joined a federal class action lawsuit filed by the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) against the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for relying on warrantless traffic stops and racial profiling, among other tactics, to arrest and detain more than 100 people across the Chicagoland area over a six-day period in May 2018. The Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) and Organized Communities Against Deportation (OCAD) are organizational plaintiffs in the lawsuit, which seeks an injunction prohibiting ICE from continuing to use such unlawful tactics.

The lawsuit asserts that, during the arrests of more than 100 individuals between May 19 and 24, 2018, ICE officers violated the Immigration and Nationality Act and the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution by failing to obtain warrants before making mass arrests, including conducting unnecessary traffic stops designed to forcibly fingerprint and arrest dozens of Latinx residents. The government has sought to dismiss the lawsuit and today the ACLU of Illinois joined NIJC with Co-Counsel Winston & Strawn to file a brief opposing the government’s motion to dismiss.

“This behavior –using racially-biased traffic stops – to fish for immigration law violations is abhorrent. The Trump Administration’s reckless targeting of the Latinx community completely disregards federal law and the Constitution. Until a court puts a stop to such activities, ICE will continue to unlawfully terrorize Illinois roads and raid our communities as it pleases.  We are proud to join this coalition’s calls to demand an end to ICE’s warrantless arrest tactics,” said Kathy Hunt Muse, Special Litigation Counsel, ACLU of Illinois.