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Border & Immigration

Federal Judge Dismisses Border Agent Lawsuit Against Deferred Action

A lawsuit filed by ten immigration agents challenging President Obama’s Deferred Action policy has been dismissed in federal court.

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents filed the suit last year.  They said deferred action forced them to violate federal law by not sending known immigrants into deportation proceedings.

Government attorneys argued the Texas federal court did not have jurisdiction over the case. Instead, they said the case could be heard by another court reserved for disputes among federal employees.

After nearly three months of arguing, U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor dismissed the case entirely, siding with the Federal Government, saying the court did not have jurisdiction.

Marisa Bono, an attorney with the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund, commented:

“The federal government has a scheme set up for addressing these types of employment disputes, and the federal court is not the proper place to air out these types of grievances.”

The judge’s order said the agents were likely to win if jurisdiction were not an issue.

The agent’s attorney, Kris Kobach, says that gives them reason to push forward:

“No administration, Republican or Democrat, should be able to break the law, and the judge did conclude that this policy is in violation of the law that was enacted in 1996 and signed by President Clinton.”

The ICE agents can now either appeal to the Fifth Circuit Court, or take the case to the civil service court.