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Case Name Palacios v. Sessions IM-NC-0004
Docket / Court 3:18-cv-00026 ( W.D.N.C. )
State/Territory North Carolina
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Attorney Organization American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center
Case Summary
On January 17, 2018, two immigrants who had been denied bond hearing by judges in the Charlotte Immigration Court filed this putative class-action lawsuit in the US. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina. The plaintiffs sued three judges on the Charlotte Immigration Court and ... read more >
On January 17, 2018, two immigrants who had been denied bond hearing by judges in the Charlotte Immigration Court filed this putative class-action lawsuit in the US. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina. The plaintiffs sued three judges on the Charlotte Immigration Court and federal officials at the Mecklenburg County Jail Central. The plaintiffs, -- represented by the Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights (CAIR) Coalition, the American Immigration Council, and private counsel -- sought injunctive relief, claiming violations of the Immigration and Nationality Act, Administrative Procedure Act, and the Fifth Amendment’s Due Process Clause. The plaintiffs alleged that judges at the Charlotte Immigration Court declined to exercise jurisdiction over bond hearings by detainees who were transferred by the Department of Homeland Security to a location outside of North or South Carolina before the bond hearing.

Specifically, the plaintiffs alleged that three Immigration Judges (IJs) refused to hold bond hearings, rubber stamping any bond hearing requests for detainees with a stamp that read “the Court declines to exercise its authority.” This forced the plaintiffs into longer periods of incarceration before they could get a bond hearing with a different judge. This was made possible by the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS’s) policy of transferring detainees out of North and South Carolina only after the detainees had filed bond hearing requests. Both detainees were released on bond after appearing before a judge in Lumpkin, Georgia. The plaintiffs sought class certification for other detainees who had filed bond hearing requests before these three IJs.

On April 12, 2018, the federal defendants filed a motion to dismiss. The defendants alleged that the court did not have subject matter jurisdiction over the case and that the plaintiffs lacked standing because they were released from detention in Georgia. Magistrate Judge David S. Cayer believed the plaintiffs had standing to sue, but recommended that the motion to dismiss be granted because the court did not have subject matter jurisdiction over IJs' discretionary decisions under 8 U.S.C. §§ 1226(e) and 1252(a)(2)(B)(ii). 2018 WL 6333706. Only the issue of subject matter jurisdiction was contested by the plaintiffs before District Judge Robert J. Conrad, Jr., who adopted the Magistrate Judge’s findings and granted the motion to dismiss. Judge Conrad also denied the plaintiff’s motion to certify the class as moot. 2018 WL 4693809. On November 16, 2018, the plaintiffs filed a notice of appeal to the 4th Circuit. Oral argument has been tentatively scheduled for December 2019.

Olivia Wheeling - 09/25/2019


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Defendant-type
Corrections
Law-enforcement
General
Bail/Bond
Fines/Fees/Bail/Bond
Habeas Corpus
Immigration/Border
Detention - procedures
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Special Case Type
Habeas
Causes of Action Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.
Ex parte Young (federal or state officials)
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) Assistant Chief Immigration Judge
Chief Immigration Judge
Facility Commander
Immigration Judges
U.S. Department of Justice
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Warden
Plaintiff Description Two residents of North Carolina held in Mecklenburg Country Jail Central for immigration proceedings.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Moot
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None yet
Filing Year 2018
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
3:18-cv-00026 (W.D.N.C.)
IM-NC-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/11/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint and Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus [ECF# 1]
IM-NC-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/17/2018
Memorandum and Recommendation and Order [ECF# 26] (2018 WL 6333706)
IM-NC-0004-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 06/26/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 30] (2018 WL 4693809) (W.D.N.C.)
IM-NC-0004-0003.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 10/01/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Cayer, David S. Court not on record [Magistrate] show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0002
Conrad, Robert James Jr. (W.D.N.C.) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0003 | IM-NC-0004-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Appelbaum, Adina Bassim (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0001 | IM-NC-0004-9000
Greer, Jordan Forsythe (North Carolina) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0001 | IM-NC-0004-9000
Laing, David Jamison (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0001 | IM-NC-0004-9000
Macleod-Ball, Kristin A. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0001 | IM-NC-0004-9000
Realmuto, Trina (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-0001 | IM-NC-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Perrin, Sean F. (North Carolina) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-9000
Weintraub, J. Max (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-NC-0004-9000

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