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Case Name Al Otro Lado v. Kelly IM-CA-0092
Docket / Court 3:17-cv-02366-BAS-KSC ( S.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Attorney Organization American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center
Center for Constitutional Rights
Case Summary
On July 12, 2017, asylum seekers from Mexico and Honduras, and Al Otro Lado, a legal service organization supporting indigent deportees, refugees, and migrants, filed this class-action lawsuit in the United States District Court Central District of California (Western Division – Los Angeles). The ... read more >
On July 12, 2017, asylum seekers from Mexico and Honduras, and Al Otro Lado, a legal service organization supporting indigent deportees, refugees, and migrants, filed this class-action lawsuit in the United States District Court Central District of California (Western Division – Los Angeles). The plaintiffs sued the U.S. Department of Homeland Security ("DHS"), the Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE") and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection ("CBP") under the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1101, et seq. and the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. § 551, et seq. They alleged violations of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution (Procedural Due Process) and the Non-Refoulement Doctrine under the international law.

The plaintiffs, represented by the Center for Constitutional Rights, the American Immigration Council, and private counsel, sought declaratory and injunctive relief. They sought asylum in the United States due to their fears of physical injury and death in their home countries, Mexico and Honduras, which they attributed to drug cartels, gang violence, and, for some, severe domestic violence.

The plaintiffs claimed that since late 2016 CBP officials had systematically prevented asylum seekers arriving at ports of entry along the United States-Mexico border from accessing the United States asylum process. They alleged that the officials had used misrepresentations, threats and intimidation, verbal and physical abuse, and coercion to deny the plaintiff class access to the asylum process. The plaintiff sought class certification in their complaint, but the court has yet to rule on it. The proposed class is defined as follows: all noncitizens who present themselves at a POE along the U.S. - Mexico border, assert an intention to seek asylum or express a fear of persecution in their home countries, and are denied access to the U.S. asylum process by CBP officials.

On July 13, 2017, the case was assigned to the District Judge John F. Walter and the Magistrate Judge Jean P. Rosenbluth.

On July 17, 2017, Judge John A. Kronstadt, who was hearing another immigration case, issued an order declining to transfer this case to his docket because there were no overlapping issues between the two cases and neither party nor judicial efficiency would be served by such an order.

On July 17, 2017, the District Judge John F. Walter issued a Standing Order assigning the action to the District Judge and referring the discovery matters to a U.S. Magistrate Judge. As per the Order "all decisions of the Magistrate Judge shall be final, subject to modification by the District Court only where it is shown that the Magistrate Judge’s Order is clearly erroneous or contrary to law".

On October 12, the defendants moved to dismiss the case. The motion for dismissal is not publically available, so we do not know their claim for dismissal.

On November 2, 2017, the District Judge vacated the scheduling conference and ordered the parties to begin private mediation. The mediation (ADR proceeding) were to be completed no later than April 2, 2018 and the results due on April 5, 2018.

On November 21, 2017, the case was transferred to the United States District Court for the Southern District of California because the overwhelming majority of the documentary evidence and the places of the class representatives' alleged injuries were located in the Southern District of California. Accordingly, the Southern District of California was the forum that would provide the easiest access to the documents and other physical evidence necessary to defend this action. In addition, the Southern District of California was more convenient for the parties and witnesses and the Southern District of California, which is located along the United States-Mexico border, has strong ties to the issues in this case.

Upon transfer, the case was assigned to District Judge Cynthia Bashant.

This case is ongoing.

Joanna Kuzdra - 01/25/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
General
International law
Immigration/Border
Admission - criteria
Admission - procedure
Asylum - criteria
Asylum - procedure
Constitutional rights
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.
Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1101 et seq.
Defendant(s) Federal government
Plaintiff Description Al Otro Lado, Inc. is a non-profit, non-partisan legal services organization serving indigent deportees, migrants, refugees and their families. Asylum seekers from Mexico and Honduras.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center
Center for Constitutional Rights
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
3:17-cv-02366 (S.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0092-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/05/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief for: (1) Violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1101, ET SEQ and (2) Violation of the Administrative [ECF# 1]
IM-CA-0092-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/12/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 113] (C.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0092-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/21/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Bashant, Cynthia Ann (S.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Crawford, Karen S. Court not on record [Magistrate]
IM-CA-0092-9000
Walter, John F. (C.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0092-0002
Plaintiff's Lawyers Abascal, Manuel A. (California)
IM-CA-0092-0001 | IM-CA-0092-9000
Azmy, Baher (New York)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Crow, Melissa E. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Flick, Wayne S. (California)
IM-CA-0092-0001 | IM-CA-0092-9000
Guisado, Angelo R. (New York)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Housh, Kristin P. (California)
IM-CA-0092-0001 | IM-CA-0092-9000
Kelley, Robin A. (California)
IM-CA-0092-0001 | IM-CA-0092-9000
Mohammadi, Faraz R. (California)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Moon, James H. (California)
IM-CA-0092-0001 | IM-CA-0092-9000
Schwarz, Ghita (New York)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Shepherd, Kathryn E. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Walters, Karolina J. (Texas)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Davila, Yamileth G. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Halaska, Alexander James (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Kelly, Genevieve M. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Pratt, Sherease Rosalyn (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Saeed, Sairah G. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Schuessler, Danielle K. (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Ward, Brian (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000
Westwater, Gisela Ann (District of Columbia)
IM-CA-0092-9000

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