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SCOTUS: Illegal immigrant avoids deportation thanks to a technicality

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The Supreme Court ruled against the deportation of a Guatemalan man because the government failed to notify him of his legal hearing in a single notice.

According to federal law, even an illegal immigrant can avoid deportation if they stay in the country for 10 years. However, if at anytime within those 10 years he or she receives “a notice to appear” at an immigration hearing, the jig is up. Once the notice is received the person must endure the hearing or face deportation. Some endure the hearing and still face deportation. But not Guatemala-born Agusto Niz-Chavez.

Niz-Chavez lucked out because he received several notices that all had different pieces of information. The Court ruled that because the law calls for “a notice” the government broke the law and could not deport him.

RELATED: War Correspondent: ‘It’s a war out there’ on the border

Chavez’s ruling came down to 6-3. Liberal Justices Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor and Stephen Breyer, as well as conservatives Neil Gorsuch, Amy Coney Barrett and Clarence Thomas were the 6 in favor. Opposing judges included Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito.

Justice Gorsuch, who wrote the assenting opinion, recognized that the Court played with semantics. “”At one level, today’s dispute may seem semantic, focused on a single word, a small one at that,” wrote Gorsuch. “But words are how the law constrains power. In this case, the law’s terms ensure that, when the federal government seeks a procedural advantage against an individual, it will at least supply him with a single and reasonably comprehensive statement of the nature of the proceedings against him.”

RELATED: Sara Carter: The border crisis is ‘astounding’

However, Justice Kavanaugh did not agree about the power of a single word. “I find the Court’s conclusion rather perplexing as a matter of statutory interpretation and common sense,” Kavanaugh wrote.

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Immigration

Border Crisis by the numbers: in January agents seize 500lbs drugs and 70 criminals with outstanding warrants

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The first month of 2023 at the southern border is already looking bleak; just take a look at the numbers. U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in El Paso, Texas have seized over 500 pounds of hard drugs in January alone.

Additionally, the agency apprehended 62 people they were able to identify as having outstanding arrest warrants. Among the criminals were sex offenders.

The devastating numbers are not surprising, given that in December, the El Paso mayor declared a sate of emergency “after record numbers of people were released onto city streets and sidewalks by the Biden administration” reports The Center Square.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott also “sent 400 National Guard troops to restore order and provide humanitarian assistance” adds the media outlet. Border Patrol data showed in December, 55,766 illegal foreign nationals were apprehended in the El Paso Sector.

There were also 32,632 known and recorded gotaways in December, meaning they were able to evade getting captured by law and immigration officials. law enforcement officers told The Center Square that despite the skyrocket high numbers, “these seizures and apprehensions represent a fraction of the amount of people and drugs being trafficked to the southern border between ports of entry.”

 

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