[JURIST] The Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund [advocacy website] Thursday filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF; press release, PDF] against the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) [official website] on behalf of several families who say that ICE agents violently raided their homes without first obtaining court warrants. The suit alleges that the raids, part of a program called Operation Return to Sender [DHS backgrounder], are meant to target illegal immigrants but often focus on homes that do not house them and where ICE agents could not "reasonably expect" to find them. The suit further accuses ICE of singling out Hispanics and says the raids violate constitutional protections against unreasonable searches. AP has more. The New York Times has additional coverage.
In another pending lawsuit, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a class action lawsuit [petition, PDF; JURIST report] in June against ICE and other federal immigration officials, alleging inadequate medical and mental health care at US detention facilities have caused "unnecessary suffering [and] avoidable death." The total number of aliens detained by ICE annually for immigration violations jumped from approximately 95,000 to 283,000 between 2001 and 2006, according to a July 2007 report [PDF text; JURIST report] by the Government Accountability Office.