Solano v. ICE (Illegal Immigration Arrests by Private Contractors)
The ACLU Foundation of Northern California and Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Asian Law Caucus filed a class-action lawsuit demanding that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) stop its illegal practice of using third-party contractor, G4S Secure Solutions, Inc., to arrest people at jails and prisons to funnel them into the deportation pipeline.
Federal law prohibits ICE from using private security to make immigration arrests, a fact that immigration officials have willfully ignored. According to the complaint, since at least 2016, ICE has sent G4S contractors to prisons and jails throughout most of California to arrest hundreds of people and transfer them from state and local custody to immigration custody. Many have been cruelly ripped away from their families and sent to out-of-state ICE prisons ravaged by COVID-19.
The State of California is aware of G4S’s abusive practices yet continues to voluntarily collaborate and turn Californians over to G4S. Further, state officials’ practice of continuing transfers to ICE during the COVID-19 pandemic, despite the widely documented, gruesome conditions in ICE detention centers, exhibits a blatant disregard for their constitutional obligation to safeguard the welfare of those in their custody.
The lawsuit seeks an injunction against the head of ICE and immigration officials who run the Los Angeles and San Francisco Field Offices, barring ICE from using private contractors to make arrests.
The plaintiff, Gabriela Solano is a 48-year-old lawful permanent resident and survivor of domestic violence who was granted parole because of her demonstrated rehabilitation during her 22 years of incarceration. However, because of ICE’s unlawful private contractor policy, she faced imminent arrest by G4S once released from prison.
The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
In April 2021, after this suit was filed, Ms. Solano was indeed arrested by G4S contractors as she was released. She is currently detained in Aurora, Colorado and fighting deportation.
KQED (Feb. 22, 2021)
Fresno Bee (Feb. 22, 2021)