Case: Aguilar v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

1:07-cv-10471 | U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts

Filed Date: March 8, 2007

Closed Date: Feb. 12, 2008

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On March 8, 2007, attorneys with the Greater Boston Legal Services, the American Civil Liberties Union, and private firms filed a habeas corpus petition in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, challenging the seizure, detention, and transportation of undocumented workers that were swept up in a massive workplace raid conducted on March 6, 2007, by agents of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Division (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security. The raid, which …

On March 8, 2007, attorneys with the Greater Boston Legal Services, the American Civil Liberties Union, and private firms filed a habeas corpus petition in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, challenging the seizure, detention, and transportation of undocumented workers that were swept up in a massive workplace raid conducted on March 6, 2007, by agents of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Division (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security. The raid, which was code named "Operation United Front," targeted suspected undocumented workers at the Michael Bianco, Inc. leather goods factory in New Bedford, Massachusetts. In the process of the raid, ICE officials detained five company managers and 360 workers. The detainees were initially held in Massachusetts and some were later transferred to holding facilities in Harlingen and El Paso, Texas.

Carlos Enrique Avila Sandoval, the Consul General of Guatemala was the named petitioner, acting as the "next friend" of the detainees. Petitioner sought a temporary restraining order to halt further transfers of the detainees outside of Massachusetts, claiming that the detainees were being deliberately transferred out of state to defeat the jurisdiction of the Court.

The District Court (Judge Richard G. Stearns) held an emergency hearing on the evening of March 8, 2007 and issued a TRO, stopping all further out-of-state transfers and instructing the government not to unduly restrict the detainees' access to counsel, pending resolution of whether the Court had jurisdiction over the case. The government maintained that it did not, and the Court ordered the parties to fully brief that issue.

The complaint was subsequently amended on March 13, 2007 to include class action allegations. In the amended complaint, the petitioners argued that the government violated their constitutional and statutory rights, including the right to be free from prolonged and indefinite detention, right to a prompt bond hearing in Massachusetts before any transfer, right to counsel, and right to family integrity. The government moved to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

A series of hearings followed regarding discovery and detainee transfers pending the Court's ruling on the jurisdictional challenge.

On May 7, 2007, Judge Stearns granted the government's motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction, holding that the REAL ID Act of 2005 which amended certain parts of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1252, stripped the District Court of jurisdiction to hear petitioners' claims. Section 1252(b)(9) limited “judicial review of all questions of law and fact . . . arising from any action taken or proceeding brought to remove [a noncitizen] from the Unites States . . . shall be available only in judicial review of a final order under this section.” Judge Stearns found this section applicable to all of petitioners' claims. He indicated that the petitioners would have to challenge any alleged violations of their rights by seeking review either through the administrative system or court of appeals after the conclusion of removal proceedings. Judge Stearns entered final judgment on May 22, 2007, and petitioners appealed.

On November 27, 2007, the First Circuit [Judges Michael Boudin, Bruce M. Selya, Jeffrey R. Howard] affirmed the district court decision, agreeing that it lacked subject matter jurisdiction over the majority of petitioners' claims. However, it found that petitioners Section 1252(b)(9) did not strip it of jurisdiction over petitioners claim that the government violated petitioners rights under the Fifth Amendment to make decisions as to the care of their children because these claims did not “arise from” the removal proceeding, but rather were collateral to the proceeding. Nonetheless, the First Circuit affirmed the dismissal of these claims for failure to state a claim because the allegations did not meet the “shock the conscience” standard for a substantive due process claim. Aguilar v. U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement Div. of Dep't of Homeland Sec., 510 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 2007). The District Court entered the First Circuit’s mandate on February 12, 2008. This case is closed.

Summary Authors

Dan Dalton (11/18/2007)

Jennifer Bronson (11/28/2013)

Related Cases

Argueta v. Myers, District of New Jersey (2008)

People


Judge(s)

Selya, Bruce Marshall (Rhode Island)

Stearns, Richard Gaylore (Massachusetts)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Bonn, Bernard J. (Massachusetts)

Kaplan, Harvey (Massachusetts)

Kelly, Nancy (Massachusetts)

Lyons, Matthew M. (Massachusetts)

Reinstein, John (Massachusetts)

Rotolo, Laura (Massachusetts)

Shin, Michael S. (Massachusetts)

Sniffin, Ondine (Massachusetts)

Judge(s)

Selya, Bruce Marshall (Rhode Island)

Stearns, Richard Gaylore (Massachusetts)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Bonn, Bernard J. (Massachusetts)

Kaplan, Harvey (Massachusetts)

Kelly, Nancy (Massachusetts)

Lyons, Matthew M. (Massachusetts)

Reinstein, John (Massachusetts)

Rotolo, Laura (Massachusetts)

Shin, Michael S. (Massachusetts)

Sniffin, Ondine (Massachusetts)

Willshire, John E. (Massachusetts)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Crowley, Frank (Massachusetts)

Grady, Mark J. (Massachusetts)

Smith, Barbara Healy (Massachusetts)

Stevens, Elizabeth Jones (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket (PACER)

Sandoval v. United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Division of the Department of Homeland Security

Feb. 12, 2008 Docket
2

Petitioners' Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction and Emergency Motion for Expedited Hearing

Sandoval v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

March 8, 2007 Pleading / Motion / Brief
1-1

Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus and Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief

Sandoval v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

March 8, 2007 Complaint
3

Memorandum in Support of Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction and Emergency Motion for Expedited Hearing

Sandoval v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

March 8, 2007 Pleading / Motion / Brief
5

Order [Granting TRO]

Sandoval v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

2007 WL 757871

March 9, 2007 Order/Opinion
4-1

Opposition to Motion for Temporary Restraining Order

Sandoval v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

March 9, 2007 Pleading / Motion / Brief
24

Respondents' Opposition to Petitioners' Emergency Motion for TRO

March 28, 2007 Pleading / Motion / Brief
22

Emergency Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Motion to Compel Discovery

March 28, 2007 Pleading / Motion / Brief
28

Order on Motion to Quash

April 3, 2007 Order/Opinion
31

Order on Emergency Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order and Request For Discovery

2007 WL 1059562

April 6, 2007 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

Aguilar, et al. v. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), et al.

Center for Constitutional Rights

Aguilar, et al. v. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), et al. was a federal class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of 22 Latino men, women and children -- citizens, lawful permanent residents an… April 4, 2013 https://ccrjustice.org/home/what-we-do/our-cases/aguilar-et-al-v-immigration-and-customs-enforcement-ice-et-al

Docket

Last updated May 12, 2022, 8 p.m.

Docket sheet not available via the Clearinghouse.

State / Territory: Massachusetts

Case Type(s):

Immigration and/or the Border

Key Dates

Filing Date: March 8, 2007

Closing Date: Feb. 12, 2008

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Approximately 350 undocumented New Bedford immigrants who were detained as a result of a workplace raid

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

Legal Services/Legal Aid

ACLU Affiliates (any)

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Denied

Defendants

Department of Homeland Security, Federal

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Division (ICE), Federal

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Ex Parte Young (Federal) or Bivens

Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. §§ 1101 et seq.

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Due Process: Procedural Due Process

Due Process: Substantive Due Process

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Habeas Corpus

Immigration/Border:

Constitutional rights

Detention - conditions

Detention - criteria

Detention - procedures

Employer sanctions

Employment

ICE/DHS/INS raid