After voting in July to file a federal lawsuit against Governor Murphy’s administration over the Immigrant Trust Directive that prohibits state, county and local law enforcement agencies from cooperating with ICE in New Jersey the Ocean County Board of Freeholders filed the lawsuit against Attorney General Grewal and his office. The Board of Freeholders is seeking a declaration that Grewal’s Immigrant Trust Directive exceeds the lawful scope of his authority and is preempted by the federal government’s exclusive authority to regulate and enforce immigration laws. It also seeks a declaration that the attorney general lacks authority to regulate the county’s sharing of inmate information with law enforcement agencies.
According to the lawsuit Ocean County shared inmate information with ICE before the Immigrant Trust Directive allowing ICE to identify and remove illegal immigrants rather than those individuals being released back into the community. The lawsuit states that the sharing of inmate information is part of Ocean County’s responsibility to safeguard local communities and that the directive conflicts with Congress’s authority to regulate the sharing of such information between ICE and county government as it pertains to immigration enforcement.
Grewal’s Immigrant Trust Directive states that New Jersey law enforcement officers cannot cooperate with ICE, turn illegal immigrants over to federal law enforcement officers for deportation or ask the immigration status of any individual unless doing so is necessary to the ongoing investigation of a serious offense and relevant to the offense under investigation. ICE is not to be provided access to state or local law enforcement resources including equipment, office space, databases or property.
In July Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Cape May County Sheriff Robert Nolan were accused by Grewal’s office of cooperating with federal immigration officials in their effort to capture and deport illegal immigrants. The Attorney General’s Office says the sheriffs violated the directive Grewal issued. It was shortly after that the Ocean County Board of Freeholders voted to file a lawsuit.
New Jerseyans have said since the Immigrant Trust Directive was forced upon New Jersey law enforcement last November that Murphy and his appointed Attorney General are hampering law enforcement’s efforts to arrest criminals and enforce federal immigration law. Murphy has made it clear that the middle class tax paying citizens of New Jersey are not his priority. Murphy is using our tax dollars to further his radical liberal agenda and his war on Washington. Even New Jersey’s Democratic leadership seems to have had enough of him.
We thank the Ocean County Board of Freeholders for standing up for law enforcement and the residents of New Jersey.
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