171 organizations call on Loretta Lynch to stop locking up deportees

July 28, 2015
Fusion

"While Bill O’Reilly uses the tragic shooting of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinleto call for harsher sentences for deportees who have returned U.S., 171 groups are calling for the Department of Justice to stop prosecuting the charge of “illegal reentry” altogether.

In a letter sent to Attorney General Loretta Lynch on Tuesday, organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights Watch, and National Council of La Raza argued that “these prosecutions further none of DOJ’s own prosecutorial priorities—national security, violent crime, financial fraud, and cases that protect our most vulnerable communities.”

Fusion investigation found that more than 23,000 immigrants a night are locked up in an immigrant prison system which has funneled billions of taxpayer dollars into the private prison industry. Fusion found that many government officials who were in charge when the shadow prison system was built now have lucrative posts within the private prison industry. The ACLU says the immigrant prisons are squalid, rife with abuse, and use solitary confinement in excess.

“There’s broad consensus that this is the worst thing you could do. It’s a huge step backwards,” said Bob Libal, the Executive Director of Grassroots Leadership, one of the 171 organizations to sign the letter to the DOJ in reference to the Kate’s Law proposal.

'Prosecuting these cases has been enormously wasteful in terms of taxpayer dollars and people’s lives.'"