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Case Name Devitri [later Antouw] v. Cronen IM-MA-0011
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-11842 ( D. Mass. )
State/Territory Massachusetts
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Case Summary
On Sept. 25, 2017, a group of Christian Indonesian nationals living in the United States filed this lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including its component Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)'s Boston and Manchester Field Offices. Represented by the private law ... read more >
On Sept. 25, 2017, a group of Christian Indonesian nationals living in the United States filed this lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including its component Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)'s Boston and Manchester Field Offices. Represented by the private law firm Nixon Peabody, plaintiffs filed motions for a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction, and stay of removal, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.

Plaintiffs alleged they were long-time residents in the United States. Despite being subject to final orders of removal for years, they had been able to remain in the country and periodically check-in under Orders of Supervision, through a voluntary ICE program called "Operation Indonesian Surrender." According to plaintiffs, ICE had recently terminated this program. In June 2017, ICE's Boston Field Office instructed plaintiffs to prepare for removal to Indonesia, instead of allowing them time to seek relief in Immigration Court. As Christians, plaintiffs feared persecution for their minority religious beliefs were they to return to Indonesia. Plaintiffs alleged that ICE's actions violated the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution as well as the Convention Against Torture (CAT).

Chief Judge Patti B. Saris was assigned to the case. The next day, Sept. 26, Judge Saris held a hearing and then issued a temporary restraining order, enjoining the defendants from removing all named plaintiffs from the United States.

On Sept. 28, plaintiffs filed an amended class petition for writs of habeas corpus and mandamus, and an amended complaint. Plaintiffs asked for immediate relief from custody under their Orders of Supervision (absent an individualized finding of danger or flight risk), and certification of a class of similarly-situated individuals who had participated in Operation Indonesian Surrender and now risked imminent deportation. Plaintiffs amended their causes of action to include, in addition to Due Process and CAT, the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA)'s asylum provisions, the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), and the Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act (FARRA).

Defendants, at the Court's request, submitted a statement on jurisdiction on Oct. 3. They argued that under 8 U.S.C. § 1252, the District Court lacked jurisdiction over the government's decision to enforce a final removal order, and that jurisdiction lay instead with the Immigration Courts. Defendants also maintained that the District Court lacked personal jurisdiction over most of the plaintiffs, who were not in detention and some of whom did not reside in the District. (One plaintiff was detained but had filed a separate habeas petition, Rombot v. Moniz, No. 1:17-cv-11577 (D. Mass. Aug 22, 2017).) Also on Oct. 3, defendants produced documents relating to Operation Indonesian Surrender.

Plaintiffs filed a second amended complaint on Oct. 6, adding more named plaintiffs. Judge Saris held an evidentiary hearing on Oct. 20.

On Nov. 22, defendants appealed Judge Saris's TRO to the First Circuit Court of Appeals, which opened a new docket (No. 17-2160).

On Nov. 27, Judge Saris issued an order holding that the District Court had subject-matter jurisdiction over all of plaintiff's claims (except the habeas claim, addressed in Rombot, which she dismissed without prejudice). Judge Saris enjoined defendants from removing plaintiffs until the Court rules on the preliminary injunction motion or until further order of the Court. 2017 WL 5707528.

On Dec. 20, defendants filed their opposition to plaintiffs' Sept. 25 motion for preliminary injunction and stay of removal. Defendants argued that the District Court lacked jurisdiction over the claims, which an Immigration Court should adjudicate. According to defendants, plaintiffs failed to show that defendants were likely to remove them before proceedings in an Immigration Court, and in the alternative they failed to show they were likely to face torture or death if removed. Plaintiffs replied on Jan. 5.

Judge Saris held a Jan. 17, 2018 hearing on the motion for preliminary injunction and stay of removal. On Feb. 1, she issued an order granting the preliminary injunction. 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16568. She found that, absent a stay, defendants would be likely to deport plaintiffs to Indonesia before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) and First Circuit could consider plaintiffs' motions to stay and reopen. Thus plaintiffs were likely to succeed on their claim that they would be denied due process before being removed to a country where they have a credible fear of persecution.

The order stayed defendants from removing any plaintiff from the United States until one of the following occurs:
- a plaintiff fails to file motions to reopen and to stay with the BIA or the Immigration Court after receiving his or her A-file; or
- a plaintiff does file these motions, but the Immigration Court denies them, and the plaintiff fails to appeal the denial to the BIA; or
- a plaintiff does appeal the denial to the BIA, but BIA denies the appeal and the plaintiff fails to appeal this denial to the First Circuit; or
- or the plaintiff does appeal the denial to the First Circuit but the First Circuit does not order the stay to continue.

On Mar. 30, defendants appealed the preliminary injunction to the First Circuit, which opened a new docket (No. 18-1281). The district court stayed its proceedings on June 27, pending resolution of the appeal.

The case is ongoing.

Ava Morgenstern - 04/08/2018
Virginia Weeks - 06/28/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief granted
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
General
International law
Over/Unlawful Detention
Immigration/Border
Asylum - criteria
Asylum - procedure
Constitutional rights
Convention against Torture
Deportation - criteria
Deportation - judicial review
Deportation - procedure
Detention - criteria
Detention - procedures
Undocumented immigrants - rights and duties
National Origin/Ethnicity
Other
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Race
Asian/Pacific Islander
Special Case Type
Habeas
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
Habeas Corpus, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2241-2253; 2254; 2255
Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1101 et seq.
Mandamus, 28 U.S.C. § 1361
Defendant(s) U.S. Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Plaintiff Description A group of Indonesian Christian nationals in the U.S. subject to final removal orders
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Source of Relief Litigation
Order Duration 2017 - n/a
Filing Year 2017
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  Devitri v. Cronen
www.aclu-nh.org
Date: Oct. 6, 2017
By: American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of New Hampshire
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:17-cv-11842 (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/12/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Emergency Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Stay of Removal [ECF# 2]
IM-MA-0011-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/25/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Stay of Removal [ECF# 3]
IM-MA-0011-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/25/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum of Law in Support of Motions for Temporary Restraining Order, Preliminary Injunction, and Stay of Removal [ECF# 4]
IM-MA-0011-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/25/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 14] (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/26/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amended Order [ECF# 17] (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/26/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
First Amended Class Petition for Writs of Habeas Corpus and Mandamus and Class Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 22]
IM-MA-0011-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/28/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Renewed Emergency Motion For Clarification of Court's Order [ECF# 28]
IM-MA-0011-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/29/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Statement on Jurisdiction [With Exhibits] [ECF# 36]
IM-MA-0011-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/03/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Respondents' Notice of Production [With Index and Exhibits] [ECF# 37]
IM-MA-0011-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/03/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Petitioners/Plaintiffs' First Set of Interrogatories to Respondents/Defendants
IM-MA-0011-0012.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/06/2017
Source: Plaintiffs' counsel
Deferral of Ruling on Request for Second Emergency Motion for Clarification of Court's Order [ECF# 42] (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/06/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Second Amended Class Petition for Writs of Habeas Corpus and Mandamus and Class Complaint For Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 44]
IM-MA-0011-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/06/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order [ECF# 65] (2017 WL 5707528 / 2017 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 194337) (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-0013.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 11/27/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Response in Opposition to Petitioners' Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 68]
IM-MA-0011-0014.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/20/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Petitioners/Plaintiffs' Reply in Further Support of Motion for Preliminary Injunction and to Extend Stay of Removal [ECF# 72]
IM-MA-0011-0015.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/05/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Order [ECF# 90] (2018 WL 661518 / 2018 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 16568) (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-0016.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 02/01/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Saris, Patti B. (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0011-0001 | IM-MA-0011-0002 | IM-MA-0011-0010 | IM-MA-0011-0013 | IM-MA-0011-0016 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Balakrishnan, Anand V. (New York)
IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Bissonnette, Gilles R (New Hampshire)
IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Deane, W. Daniel (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-0003 | IM-MA-0011-0004 | IM-MA-0011-0005 | IM-MA-0011-0006 | IM-MA-0011-0007 | IM-MA-0011-0011 | IM-MA-0011-0012 | IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Gelernt, Lee (New York)
IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Lafaille, Adriana (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Pritchett, Sydney (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-0004 | IM-MA-0011-0005 | IM-MA-0011-0006 | IM-MA-0011-0007 | IM-MA-0011-0011 | IM-MA-0011-0012 | IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Rabinovitz, Judy (New York)
IM-MA-0011-9000
Rauseo-Ricupero, Ronaldo (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-0004 | IM-MA-0011-0005 | IM-MA-0011-0006 | IM-MA-0011-0007 | IM-MA-0011-0011 | IM-MA-0011-0012 | IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Segal, Matthew (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Warecki, Nathan P. (New Hampshire)
IM-MA-0011-0003 | IM-MA-0011-0004 | IM-MA-0011-0005 | IM-MA-0011-0006 | IM-MA-0011-0007 | IM-MA-0011-0011 | IM-MA-0011-0012 | IM-MA-0011-0015 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Andrapalliyal, Vinita (District of Columbia)
IM-MA-0011-0008 | IM-MA-0011-0009 | IM-MA-0011-0014 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Celone, Michael Anthony (District of Columbia)
IM-MA-0011-0009 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Farquhar, Rayford A. (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-9000
Peachey, William Charles (District of Columbia)
IM-MA-0011-0008 | IM-MA-0011-0009 | IM-MA-0011-0014
Readler, Chad A. (District of Columbia)
IM-MA-0011-0008 | IM-MA-0011-0009 | IM-MA-0011-0014
Sady, Michael P. (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-9000
Silvis, William C. (District of Columbia)
IM-MA-0011-0008 | IM-MA-0011-0009 | IM-MA-0011-0014 | IM-MA-0011-9000
Other Lawyers Hawkinson, John A (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0011-9000

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