University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Gonzalez Machado v. Ashcroft IM-WA-0017
Docket / Court CS-02-0066-FVS ( E.D. Wash. )
State/Territory Washington
Case Type(s) Immigration
Attorney Organization Legal Services/Legal Aid
Southern Poverty Law Center
Case Summary
On February 19, 2002, attorneys with the Southern Poverty Law Center, Columbia Legal Services, the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, and private firms filed suit on behalf of a 15-year-old Mexican orphan detainee in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, seeking to ... read more >
On February 19, 2002, attorneys with the Southern Poverty Law Center, Columbia Legal Services, the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, and private firms filed suit on behalf of a 15-year-old Mexican orphan detainee in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington, seeking to establish a right to appointed counsel under the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment for detained, unaccompanied and indigent juvenile aliens facing deportation. Plaintiff sought declaratory and injunctive relief and class certification.

Shortly after suit was filed, the District Court (Chief Judge Fred L. Van Sickle) issued a TRO, prohibiting the INS from removing the plaintiff until further order of the Court. On March 5, 2002, Judge Van Sickle entered a preliminary injunction, ordering the INS not to remove plaintiff from the U.S. or conduct deportation proceedings until further order of the Court. The Court appointed counsel to plaintiff for the limited purpose of securing his release from custody.

Plaintiff then filed a motion for class certification. The government opposed class certification and moved to dismiss the case. The District Court (Chief Judge Fred L. Van Sickle) dismissed the complaint, holding that undocumented aliens did not have a constitutional right to have lawyers appointed to represent them in deportation proceedings. Judge Van Sickle then dissolved the preliminary injunction, by order dated August 21, 2002. Plaintiff then accepted voluntary deportation and was returned to Mexico.

Dan Dalton - 12/12/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Immigration
Constitutional rights
Deportation - judicial review
Deportation - procedure
Family
Plaintiff Type
State Plaintiff
Causes of Action Bivens
Defendant(s) Immigration and Naturalization Service
U.S. Attorney General
Plaintiff Description Class of unaccompanied immigrant children detained by the INS and facing deportation proceedings without a lawyer
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Legal Services/Legal Aid
Southern Poverty Law Center
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2002
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Threats to the Future of the Immigration Class Action
Washington University Journal of Law and Policy
By: Jill E. Family (Widener University School of Law)
Citation: 27 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol'y 71 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
2:02-cv-00066-FVS (E.D. Wash.) 08/20/2002
IM-WA-0017-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief 02/19/2002
IM-WA-0017-0001.pdf | Detail
Order Granting Motion to Dismiss 06/18/2002 (E.D. Wash.)
IM-WA-0017-0002.pdf | Detail
Judges Van Sickle, Frederick L. (E.D. Wash.)
IM-WA-0017-0002 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Adams, Matthew (Washington)
IM-WA-0017-0001 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Arthur, Patricia J. (Washington)
IM-WA-0017-0001 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Brownstein, Rhonda C. (Alabama)
IM-WA-0017-0001 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Higuera, Marie (Washington)
IM-WA-0017-9000
Isserlis, Nancy L. (Washington)
IM-WA-0017-0001 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Nepal, Rohit (Alabama)
IM-WA-0017-0001 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Odhiambo, Atieno C. (Washington)
IM-WA-0017-0001 | IM-WA-0017-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Beatty, William (Washington)
IM-WA-0017-9000
Gorden, Michelle (District of Columbia)
IM-WA-0017-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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