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Moreno v. Napolitano

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division

September 29, 2014

JOSE JIMENEZ MORENO and MARIA JOSE LOPEZ, on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
JANET NAPOLITANO, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS); JOHN MORTON, Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Removal Operations (ERO); DAVID C. PALMATIER, Unit Chief, ICE/ERO Law Enforcement Support Center (LESC); RICARDO WONG, ICE/ERO Director, Chicago Field Office, in their official capacities, Defendants.

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

JOHN Z. LEE, District Judge.

Plaintiff Jose Jimenez Moreno was in the custody of the Sheriff of Winnebego county, Illinois, and Plaintiff Maria Jose Lopez was in the custody of the federal correctional center in Tallahassee, Florida, when they became the subjects of Form I-247 immigration detainers issued by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Division ("ICE") of the United States Department of Homeland Security ("DHS"). The detainers requested that the respective local law enforcement agency ("LEA") retain custody of Moreno and Lopez, upon their release, up to 48 additional hours. Moreno and Lopez filed this lawsuit, alleging that ICE's issuance of the Form I-247 retainers exceeded its authority under the Administrative Procedure Act ("APA"), 5 U.S.C. §§ 706(2)(A)-(D), and the Immigration and Naturalization Act ("INA"), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1226(a), 1357(a)(2), and 1357(d) (Claim I). Plaintiffs also assert that the retainers violated Plaintiffs' rights under the Fourth and Fifth Amendment (Claims II and III) and contravened the Tenth Amendment by compelling state and local LEAs to enforce a federal regulatory scheme (Claim IV).

Before the Court are the parties' cross-motions for partial judgment on the pleadings as to Claims I and IV. For the reasons provided herein, the Court denies both parties' motions as to Claim I and grants Defendants' motion as to Claim IV.

Factual Background[1]

I. The I-247 Detainer Form

ICE is the division of DHS charged with identifying and removing unlawfully present aliens from the United States. Amend. Compl. ¶ 15. As part of carrying out that task, ICE's division of Enforcement and Removal ("ERO") issues Form I-247 immigration detainers to federal, state, and local LEAs. Id. These detainers contain two main sections. Id., Ex. A (Immigration Detainer - Notice of Action).

The first section advises a LEA that DHS has taken an action concerning an individual in the LEA's custody. Id. The detainer form issued to Moreno and Lopez lists four checkboxes ("[]") corresponding to various actions undertaken by DHS: (1) commencement of an investigation to determine whether the individual is subject to removal from the United States; (2) issuance of a Notice to Appear or other charging document initiating removal proceedings; (3) issuance of a warrant of arrest in removal proceedings; and (4) issuance of an order of deportation or removal from the United States. Id., Ex. A. ICE indicates which of these actions are applicable by checking the box next to the corresponding action. Id. [2]

The second section of the detainer form requests that the LEA take certain actions. Amend. Compl., Ex. A. DHS can request the LEA to: (1) maintain custody of an individual for a period not to exceed forty-eight hours (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays) to provide adequate time for DHS to assume custody of the individual pursuant to 8 CFR § 287.7; (2) sign and return a copy of the form; (3) notify DHS of the time of release at least thirty days prior to release or as far in advance as possible; (4) notify DHS in the event of the inmate's death or transfer to another institution; and (5) cancel the detainer. Id. Like the first section, ICE indicates what action it requests the LEA to take by checking a box next to the appropriate action(s). Id. [3]

B. The Named Plaintiffs

In November 2010, Plaintiff Maria Lopez pleaded guilty to the federal offense of "misprision of a felony." Am. Compl. ¶ 14. On January 25, 2011, she surrendered herself to the Federal Correctional Institution ("FCI") in Tallahassee, Florida, to serve a year-long sentence. Id. On February 1, 2011, ICE's Chicago Area of Responsibility ("AOR")[4] issued an I-247 immigration detainer against Lopez to the FCI. Id., Ex. A.

In the first section of the detainer, DHS advised the FCI that an "[i]nvestigation has been initiated to determine whether this person is subject to removal from the United States." Id., Ex. A. In the second section of the detainer, DHS requested that the FCI: (1) maintain custody of Lopez pursuant to 8 CFR § 287.7 for a period not to exceed forty-eight hours to provide DHS time to assume custody of Lopez; (2) notify DHS at least thirty days prior to Lopez's release or as soon as possible; and (3) notify DHS in the event of Lopez's death or transfer to another institution. Id., Ex. A.

On March 21, 2011, Plaintiff Jose Moreno was arrested in Rockford, Illinois, and taken into state custody. Id. ¶ 13. That same day, ICE's Chicago AOR issued a Form I-247 immigration detainer against Moreno to the Winnebago County Sheriff. Am. Compl. ¶ 13, Ex. A.

The first section of the detainer advised the Sheriff that an "[i]nvestigation has been initiated to determine whether this person is subject to removal from the United States." Id., Ex. A. In the second section, DHS requested that the Sheriff: (1) maintain custody of Moreno pursuant to 8 CFR § 287.7 for a period not to exceed forty-eight hours to provide DHS time to assume custody of Moreno; (2) complete, sign, and return the form; (3) notify DHS at least thirty days prior to Moreno's ...


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