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Case Name Abdi v. Duke IM-NY-0058
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-00721-EAW ( W.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On July 28, 2017, this plaintiff -- a detained asylum-seeker -- filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York. The petition is not publicly available.

On July 31, the case was assigned to Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford.
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On July 28, 2017, this plaintiff -- a detained asylum-seeker -- filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York. The petition is not publicly available.

On July 31, the case was assigned to Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford.

The plaintiffs, all asylum-seekers detained at Batavia (the Buffalo, NY Federal Detention Facility), filed an amended petition on Aug. 21, 2017. The New York Civil Liberties Union and the International Refugee Assistance Project represented the plaintiffs. In their amended class-action petition, the plaintiffs sought to challenge the federal government’s ability to deny arriving asylum seekers parole and then incarcerate them. The plaintiffs argued that the government was doing so despite its determination that the asylum seekers were likely to win the right to remain in the United States. According to the plaintiffs, their detentions were prolonged and arbitrary, and they were denied parole requests or bond hearings. The plaintiffs alleged violations of Fifth Amendment due process, the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. § 1182(d)(5)(A), and 8 C.F.R. § 212.5.

The petition sought to certify a class “of all arriving asylum-seekers who have
passed a credible fear interview and who are or will be detained at the Buffalo Federal Detention Facility and who have not been granted parole." They also sought certification of a prolonged detention sub-class defined as "of those arriving asylum-seekers who are detained at the Buffalo Federal Detention Facility, have passed a credible fear interview, and have been or will be detained for more than six months without a bond hearing before an immigration judge."

The defendants moved to dismiss the case on Sept. 12, 2017. The plaintiffs moved for a preliminary injunction on Sept. 25, 2017. The Court denied the motion to dismiss and granted a preliminary injunction on Nov. 17, 2017. The Court ordered that defendants comply with their internal directive on parole hearings and provide bond hearings after six months of detention to “establish by clear and convincing evidence that an asylum-seeker is a flight risk or danger to the community to justify continued detention.” The Court stated that, while diverging from the ICE directive might be politically significant in light of the Trump administration policies, there was no legal basis for divergence. 2017 WL 5599521.

The Court granted class certification on Dec. 19, 2017. The Court further ordered that the preliminary injunction applied to the newly certified class. 2017 WL 6507248.

On Jan. 11, 2018, the defendants filed an interlocutory appeal to the Second Circuit as to the Court's denial of the defendants' motion to dismiss. The Second Circuit opened a new docket, No. 18-00094. The defendants' appellate opening brief is due May 4.

The District Court held a motions hearing on Jan. 26 and issued a Feb. 9 order clarifying the Nov. 17 preliminary injunction. Judge Wolford specified that an Immigration Judge who conducts a subclass member's bond hearing and determines that release is appropriate must consider alternative conditions of release and ability to pay bond.

This case is ongoing in both the district and circuit courts.

Virginia Weeks - 11/26/2017
Virginia Weeks - 01/13/2018
Ava Morgenstern - 02/17/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief granted
Discrimination-basis
Immigration status
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Habeas Corpus
Over/Unlawful Detention
Immigration/Border
Admission - criteria
Admission - procedure
Asylum - criteria
Asylum - procedure
Constitutional rights
Detention - criteria
Detention - procedures
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Special Case Type
Habeas
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action All Writs Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1651
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
Habeas Corpus, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2241-2253; 2254; 2255
Defendant(s) U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description Class: All arriving asylum-seekers who have passed a credible fear interview and who are or will be detained at the Buffalo Federal Detention Facility and who have not been granted parole.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Source of Relief Litigation
Order Duration 2017 - n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  Litigation: Abdi v. Duke
www.refugeerights.org
Date: Nov. 17, 2017
By: International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Abdi et al. v. Duke et al.
https://www.nyclu.org/
Date: Nov. 17, 2017
By: New York Civil Liberties Union
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:17-cv-00721-EAW (W.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0058-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/19/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
First Amended Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus and Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 38-2]
IM-NY-0058-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/25/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Decision and Order [ECF# 56] (2017 WL 5599521) (W.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0058-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 11/17/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Decision and Order [ECF# 66] (2017 WL 6507248) (W.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0058-0003.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 12/19/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Decision and Order [ECF# 83] (W.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0058-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/09/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Wolford, Elizabeth Ann (W.D.N.Y.)
IM-NY-0058-0002 | IM-NY-0058-0003 | IM-NY-0058-0004 | IM-NY-0058-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Alagesan, Deepa (New York)
IM-NY-0058-9000
Austin, Paige (New York)
IM-NY-0058-0001 | IM-NY-0058-9000
Dunn, Christopher (New York)
IM-NY-0058-0001 | IM-NY-0058-9000
Hirose, Mariko (New York)
IM-NY-0058-0001
Hodgson, Robert (New York)
IM-NY-0058-0001 | IM-NY-0058-9000
Padmanabhan, Aadhithi (New York)
IM-NY-0058-0001 | IM-NY-0058-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Peoples, Tashiba Monique (District of Columbia)
IM-NY-0058-9000
Weintraub, J. Max (District of Columbia)
IM-NY-0058-9000
Young, Stacey Ilene (District of Columbia)
IM-NY-0058-9000

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