Justice Department Files Lawsuit Against State For Law Allowing Arrest Of Illegal Immigrants

(ConservativeSense.com) – The US Department of Justice (DOJ) filed another lawsuit against the state of Texas, this time challenging a new law allowing state law enforcement to arrest and immediately deport illegal immigrants who cross over the southern border.

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is once again standing off with the federal government about how the border crisis and illegal immigration should be handled. On Wednesday, Jan. 3, the DOJ filed a lawsuit in a federal court in Austin challenging new legislation signed by Abbott at the end of 2023 that goes against federal authority over immigration policy.

The lawsuit states that the US government is bringing “this action” against Texas “to preserve” its own “exclusive authority… to regulate the entry and removal of noncitizens.” The DOJ maintains that the Lone Star State “cannot run its own immigration system” and that “its efforts… intrude on” the “exclusive authority” of the federal government to regulate entry and expulsion of immigrants. They accuse Texas of frustrating “immigration operations and proceedings” and interfering with “foreign relations,” referring to the Mexican government’s negative response to Abbott’s efforts.

Texas is also engaged in a separate legal battle with the federal government over some of its other efforts to secure the border as part of “Operation Lone Star.” The DOJ has been challenging the state’s use of razor wire along the shores of the Rio Grande River, as well as a barrier of buoys with an attached net installed in the river itself to stop illegal crossings.

The new Texas immigration law allows illegal immigrants captured by state law enforcement to either agree to follow a court order to leave the country or face prosecution for illegal entry misdemeanor charges. If they fail to leave afterward and are arrested again, they could face more serious felony charges. Whether or not they are Mexican citizens, those ordered out of the US will be sent to ports of entry at the southern border.

With the exception of a few places, such as churches and schools, the new law is enforceable anywhere in the state.

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