Thursday, July 17, 2008

Appeals Court upholds arresting illegal immigrants using human smuggling statute

Just a day after the Maricopa County Attorney's Office announced that it had prosecuted 750 illegal immigrants so far under the state's human smuggling statute, the AZ Court of Appeals upheld the interpretation of law permitting them to do so. Illegal immigrants can be arrested for hiring smugglers - legally considered conspiring to smuggle themselves into the country. The judge found that Arizona's law was not preempted by federal law, since it was not trying to regulate immigration, and said that if the law wasn't mean to apply to smugglees, then the legislature could have revised it but didn't. This is one of the more novel ways local government has gotten around the federal government's failure to pass workable immigration laws. Read more here.

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