News of largescale workplace raids conducted by the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) have proliferated the media in recent months. Recent high-profile worksite immigration enforcement operations include the raid conducted on April 5, 2018 in Bean Station, Tennessee on the Southeastern Provision meat-processing plant which resulted in the arrest and detention of 97 individuals for suspected immigration violations; the raid ICE conducted on June 5, 2018 at Corso’s Flower and Garden Centers in Sandusky and Castalio, Ohio where 114 workers were arrested and detained on suspected immigration violations. Locally, a widespread immigration enforcement operation was conducted by ICE across Los Angeles between February 11th through the 15th of this year, which resulted in the arrest and detention of over 200 people, while raids in Northern California on February 27th, resulted in the arrest and detention of 150 people on suspected immigration violations.
For the relatives of those arrested, the aftermath of such raids are frightening and filled with uncertainty. However, for many people caught in these types of workplace raids, detention doesn’t have to mean the end of their life in the U.S. or that their situation is hopeless. After a person is arrested and detained by ICE, the first thing that everyone wants is for the person who is detained to be released. The initial bond determination is made by a deportation officer. If the officer denies bond or sets it at an unreachable amount, it is important to know that they are legally entitled to a review of this initial bond determination by an immigration judge. The request for a bond redetermination can be made orally but is best if presented in writing with strong supporting documentation. Some people, such as those with previous criminal convictions, those who are being charged as removable on certain terrorist or political grounds, and those who already have a prior order of removal entered against them, are subject to mandatory detention and are not eligible to be released on bond. However, if a person has no prior criminal convictions and their only arrest and detention is in the present immigration context, they may be eligible to be released on bond while their case proceeds, which is why requesting a bond redetermination when they appear before the Immigration Judge is important.
During a bond redetermination hearing, the person who is detained (the “detainee”) bears the responsibility to demonstrate to the Immigration Judge that he or she does not pose a danger to the community and should be released on bond while their immigration proceedings are ongoing. The detainee must also demonstrate that they do not pose a danger to national security, that they do not pose a flight risk, and that they are not a poor bail risk. When deciding whether to grant release on bond, the Immigration Judge may consider many factors. These factors can include, but aren’t limited to, whether the detainee has a fixed address in the United States, how long he or she has resided the U.S., if the detainee has local family ties and whether those ties may enable them to obtain legal immigration status, any immigration relief that may be available to the detainee, the detainee’s employments history, membership or participation in any community organizations, ownership of any property in the U.S., if he or she has any prior immigration violations, how the detainee entered the U.S., if the detainee is facing any pending criminal charges, any previous immoral acts or participation in subversive activities, as well as his or her financial ability to post bond if granted.
This is not an exclusive list of factors the Immigration Judge may consider, as what is relevant varies from person to person and is greatly dependent on the facts of each case. Additionally, it is important to understand that after the initial bond redetermination by the Immigration Judge, a request for a subsequent redetermination can only be made in writing and must demonstrate that, “circumstances have changed materially since the prior bond redetermination.” Therefore, it is important to hire an attorney who is knowledgeable in immigration law and is familiar with proceedings before the Immigration Court, as the detainee will generally have one chance to present their case to the Immigration Judge as to why they should be released on bond, absent any material change in their circumstances.
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Reeves Miller Zhang & Diza is one of the oldest, largest and most experienced immigration fi rms in the United States with offi ces in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Manila and China.
For more Information please call (800) 795- 8009 or visit www.rreeves.com.
Telephone: (800) 795-8009
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The analysis and suggestions offered in this column do not create a lawyer-client relationship and are not a substitute for the personalized representation that is essential to every case.