DETROIT (AP) — A federal judge in Detroit has indefinitely stopped the deportation of more than 1,400 Iraqis who fear physical harm if kicked out of the U.S.
The injunction Monday by Judge Mark Goldsmith is his latest ruling in a lawsuit filed in June by the American Civil Liberties Union. It allows the Iraqis, many of whom are Christian, to stay in the U.S. while they try to persuade immigration courts to overturn the deportations based on perceived risks in their native country.
Roughly 230 people are in custody. The remaining 1,200 are not locked up but could face deportation at any time. The U.S. government says the majority have criminal records and are a threat to the public.
The government told Goldsmith that he’s exceeding his authority in immigration matters.