CHICAGO — The American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois is seeking more information on how Trump administration officials are interpreting and executing the president’s unconstitutional immigration ban. The Freedom of Information Act requests filed today ask, among other things, if the Customs and Border Enforcement (CBP) personnel are acting in violation of federal courts that ordered a stay on the ban’s implementation. The filing today is part of a coordinated effort from 49 ACLU affiliates, which filed 18 FOIAs with CBP field offices and its headquarters spanning 55 international airports across the country.

“The President’s order created confusion and chaos, visiting harm on thousands of travelers into O’Hare this past weekend,” said Rebecca Glenberg, senior staff attorney at the ACLU of Illinois.  “We hope to get more information about how this order is being interpreted and implemented to avoid further confusion.”

Media reports in Chicago and across the nation indicate that CBP officials detained and deported individuals, even after federal courts ordered officials to stop enforcing the Trump executive order through a petition from the ACLU and other organizations. The ACLU, in the FOIAs filed today, is seeking to insure that the court orders issued over the past weekend are being executed and followed.
“The public needs to know if federal immigration officials are defying lawful federal court orders that struck at President Trump’s unconstitutional immigration ban,” added Glenberg.  “We are pleased to join with our colleagues across the nation to use the Freedom of Information Act to shed light on this episode. “
The Trump administration has yet to inform the public of how many refugees, visa holders, and legal permanent residents have been affected by this unlawful action.

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Read the FOIA request letter to the CBP (PDF).