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HomeIllinois NewsAG Madigan discourages local, state law enforcement from working with immigration officials

AG Madigan discourages local, state law enforcement from working with immigration officials




CHICAGO – Illinois Republican Party leadership insisted that the Illinois "Trust" Act Governor Rauner signed into law last week making Illinois effectively a sanctuary state really had no substantial effect on law enforcement pertaining to those living in the U.S. illegally. 

Attorney General Lisa Madigan doesn't seem to agree with that assessment. Her office says because of the Trust Act, limitations on local and state law officials' communications with immigration authorities are now in effect.

"Based on the [Trump Administration's] Executive Order and the Trust Act, this guidance will explain the limitations on the authority of local and state law enforcement to enforce federal immigration law," Madigan said in the 12-page document issued Wednesday.

"Federal and state law – including the newly enacted Illinois Trust Act – limit the authority of Illinois law enforcement agencies to engage in immigration enforcement activities," the document says. "All law enforcement agencies and officers must be aware of and stay within these limitations when conducting law enforcement activities."

Further statements show Madigan officially discourages Illinois law enforcement from working directly with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.

"While Illinois law enforcement and other government agencies are not prohibited from sharing or receiving citizenship information, they are not required to do so. Moreover, law enforcement policies and practices to share information about individuals in their custody may deter individuals from reporting information about a crime or appearing as a witness if these individuals are concerned that their information will be shared with ICE or other federal authorities.

"Accordingly, such policies and practices may diminish the relationship between Illinois law enforcement and immigrant communities. Therefore, agencies should carefully consider the impact of sharing information with federal authorities on the community’s perceptions of trust and confidentiality," the opinion says.

Madigan's office dictates law enforcement throughout the state act thus:

      * Shall not stop, search, or arrest any individual on the sole basis that the individual is undocumented; arrests may be made only when Illinois law enforcement has an arrest warrant or probable cause to believe that a criminal offense has been committed;
      * Are in violation of state law and constitutional protections if they detain an individual pursuant to an ICE detainer beyond his or her normal custody release date;
      * Are not required to participate in immigration enforcement activities and shall treat a request from federal immigration authorities for access to detention facilities or individuals held by local authorities as a request, rather than an obligation;
      * Are not required to inquire or collect information about individuals’ immigration or citizenship status;
      * Should consider whether any internal policies regarding sharing immigration status information with federal immigration authorities will promote trust and confidentiality in their communities;
      * Should consider requiring all officers to identify the jurisdiction they represent when engaging with community members or knocking on doors to encourage transparency and cooperation and to avoid any concern or confusion about whether the officers work for federal immigration authorities.

The full AG's statement is HERE.


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  1. So…being an illegal alien is not a criminal offense? Does she really mean to imply that flouting immigration law is a misdemeanor, essentially on the same level as a parking ticket or a moving violation?
    Actually, it’s worse than that – you’d have more consequences for getting a speeding ticket than you would for living here illegally and all that that implies: ID fraud and all sorts of fun stuff.
    Hey Lisa: Ever hear of the word “malfeasance”? It applies to you, honey.
    With morons like that ultimately responsible for enforcing the law in this state, it’s little wonder we are so screwed. Can’t wait to escape Illinois ASAP.

  2. Rauner can say that municipal police authorities wanting this legislation was what drove him BUT that isn’t going to be enough to get conservative Republicans to cast a vote for him (unless he goes unchallenged in the Republican Primary). Rauner did himself irreparable damage on this screw-up on his part.

  3. All of our government leaders should remember that John C. Calhoun brought forth the idea of nullification and Andrew Jackson carried it even further. A true Illinois leader by the name of Ulysses Grant ended this question May 9, 1865. The concept of a states right to ignore federal laws they don’t agree with or want to recognize ended under Abraham Lincoln. If this selective recognition of applicable laws is allowed why not have our state leaders not recognize the unsustainable pension laws written into our state constitution and only recognize those which are sustainable?

  4. When will the CITIZENS wake up??? This is what her, her daddy and others depend on to keep them in office. All those illegal votes tip them over for the win……and of course these are the people who are raking in the benefits you and I pay for. And yes, I am going to be one of the families exiting Illinois.

  5. “So…being an illegal alien is not a criminal offense? ”
    Yes, this is literally the case. Unlawful presence is not a misdemeanor or felony. It is a civil violation. That’s why you are not entitled to a lawyer at a hearing, even if you are a minor.