The Trump administration tried to deport a woman and her daughter while she is appealing her deportation ruling in court, prompting a federal judge to halt the flight and slam the government for what he called their “outrageous” actions that are “not acceptable.” They literally had to turn a plane around in El Salvador and return them to the United States so they could have their day in court.
A federal judge in Washington halted a deportation in progress Thursday and threatened to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions in contempt after learning that the Trump administration started to remove a woman and her daughter while a court hearing appealing their deportations was underway.
“This is pretty outrageous,” U.S. District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan said after being told about the removal. “That someone seeking justice in U.S. court is spirited away while her attorneys are arguing for justice for her?”
“I’m not happy about this at all,” the judge continued. “This is not acceptable.”
The woman, known in court papers as Carmen, is a plaintiff in a lawsuit filed this week by the American Civil Liberties Union. It challenges a recent policy change by the Department of Justice that aims to expedite the removal of asylum seekers who fail to prove their cases and excludes domestic and gang violence as justifications for granting asylum in the United States.
And it’s something the judge might actually do. Part of the ruling was that the judge told the DOJ to file what’s called a “show cause” brief, telling him why he shouldn’t hold Jeff Sessions and other high officials in contempt of court.