Despite the fact that the chief justices of the California Supreme Court, the Connecticut Supreme Court, the New Jersey Supreme Court, and the Rhode Island Supreme Court (so far) have taken the extraordinary step of condemning ICE’s reprehensible tactic of arresting immigrants at courthouses, federal immigration agents deplorably persist, this time stalking immigrants at a human trafficking court in Queens, New York:
A WNYC reporter was in the building when Legal Aid lawyers huddled frantically in the hallway: Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents had been spotted in the building. The lawyers approached one of the agents, and he acknowledged there were warrants for several people in the building.
The lawyers said they learned from the judge that ICE wanted a young Chinese woman in the Human Trafficking Intervention Courtroom. They said she’d been charged with working illegally as a masseuse, and was about to receive an adjournment in
of dismissal after completing a program with a community group — a goal of human trafficking court.
The attorneys were able to protect their client by asking the judge for bail, and bought enough time for her to leave the building without being detained.
According to WNYC, an ICE spokesperson attempted to justify the arrests of the three individuals who were taken into custody that day by saying that they were apprehended outside the courthouse, not inside. That doesn’t change the fact that ICE is not only further attacking victims, but also ignoring pleas from judges and others to stop immigration operations at courthouses, period.