Immigration reformers were dealt a setback when a federal appeals court reversed a Nevada ruling that nullified a US deportation law. It is illegal to reenter the United States after being expelled. Monday saw a decision from the 9th Circuit. Monday brought a decision from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. A three-judge decision reversed a lower court’s dismissal of an illegal reentry claim brought by a Mexican immigrant on the grounds that the “facially neutral” legislation was unconstitutional.
The ruling in 2021 was the first to overturn the nearly century-old law that made it illegal to return to the United States after having been deported. Gustavo Carrillo-Lopez’s attorneys argued that Section 1326 was unconstitutional and biased against Latinos. National Immigration Project director Sirine Shebaya said, “We are deeply disappointed in the Ninth Circuit’s decision to uphold Section 1326, a discriminatory law that continues to fuel the mass incarceration of Black and brown people, waste government resources, and tear families apart.”
Although Carrillo-Lopez’s lawyer is unhappy with the decision, she has not yet decided whether or not to appeal to the US Supreme Court. The case is “very important” and “we intend to seek further review on this constitutional issue,” as Amy Cleary put it. The three-judge panel heard arguments from a Justice Department attorney who said the racist 1929 Undesirable Aliens Act was made constitutional by modifications.
According to Du, the “racist, nativist roots” of the 1929 law remained after the 1952 amendment. Of the defendants charged under Section 1326 between October 2021 and September 2022, 96% were from Spanish-speaking countries in South America, Central America, Mexico, and the Spanish-speaking Caribbean. Despite the fact that Section 1326 and its counterpart, Section 1325, which criminalizes unauthorized entry into the US, remain among the most prosecuted offenses, the US government has pursued unlawful reentry less since the COVID-19 epidemic.