New Jersey Rules Limiting Police from Helping ICE Are Now Effective

A new directive significantly limits the amount of assistance provided by state, county, and local law enforcement to federal immigration officials.

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal created the directive as a strong response to Trump administration immigration policies. The directive prevents any New Jersey law enforcement officials from searching or detaining any immigrants at the request of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. However, officials are allowed to collaborate with ICE if the immigrant is wanted for serious crimes, violent crimes, or for final deportation orders.

What Does the Directive Do?

The order is known as the Immigrant Trust Directive and has the following key rules. New Jersey law enforcement officials:

  • Are not allowed to investigate or arrest a person based on their suspected immigration status. Police are only allowed to ask about a detainee’s immigration status while investigating a serious or violent crime.
  • Must not participate in ICE raids or any other operations with the agency.
  • Will not honor any requests from ICE to detain a specific individual. However, officers will arrest individuals accused of serious or violent crimes. Arrests are also allowed if the individual has a final deportation order signed by a judge, or if they have been charged with a crime in the last five years.
  • Must get the attorney general's approval for agreements made with federal officials regarding immigration enforcement.
  • Are barred from allowing ICE to interview detained individuals before they are informed of their right to legal representation.
  • Are not allowed to use a person’s immigration status for pretrial detention. Prosecutors are also not allowed to use a witness’s immigration status against them.
  • Must inform defendants that their charges and convictions may carry immigration consequences.

The directive contains additional requirements for law enforcement officials to properly notify detainees if ICE is requesting any information regarding their release date, potential interviews, or of any requests to continue detaining the individual past their release date.

Why Was the Directive Created?

Several New Jersey law enforcement officials support the Immigrant Trust Directive because they claim that cooperating with ICE undermines a positive relationship between the police and the communities where they work. Officials argue that police need the trust of immigrant communities to provide effective and safe law enforcement.

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Hudson City Police to Receive Warrant Training

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If you need help with your immigration case help is available right now from The Law Offices of Lloyd E. Bennett, Esq., P.C. when you call (800) 909-8129