The court officer who helped an illegal alien dodge from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials to escape repatriation right outside the courtroom should be punished. U.S. Attorney Billy Williams stated that on Jan. 27 a “judicial referee” helped the illegal alien sneak out another door to elude ICE agents, according to the Oregonian. The illegal immigrant was in the process of arraignment for drunk driving in the Portland’s Multnomah County Courthouse.
Enforcement of immigration policy by ICE officials has been difficult at best under the Obama immigration enforcement policies like “Catch and Release.” So, when a court officer ignores federal law in order to let an illegal immigrant who has been lawfully arrested escape out of the building, that official must be brought up on state and federal charges.
Unfortunately, that may not be the case because, even though the unidentified referee has the same authority as circuit judges, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the U.S. Department of Justice have thus far declined to pursue a criminal investigation.
Even though U.S. Williams has declined to identify the referee, the public does deserve to know who has decided to use his or her own bias in negating a federal ICE order.
That type of apparent illegal behavior deserves a serious investigation by the Oregon State Bar as well as a move for dismissal of the referee from the current position. The irony of this is that the illegal immigrant was given a get-out-of-the-building pass by the referee on the same day that President Donald Trump signed the executive immigration order, opined U.S. Attorney Williams, reported the Oregonian.
What is equally troubling is that the federal referee must have known that illegal immigrants facing impaired driving accusations and other charges were a priority for deportation, and that legal reality had been specifically and willfully ignored. In addition, that court officer had taken a sworn oath to follow and uphold the law.
There is a planned internal view in the works according to Multnomah County Circuit Court’s presiding judge, Nan Waller. Hopefully the review will be more than a whitewash of the event, even though she did send an email to court staffers alerting them to their responsibility to not impede the work of federal immigration agents.