LatinoJustice Warns VA Gov: Don't Authorize Cops to Ask about Status

LatinoJustice PRLDEF President and General Counsel Cesar Perales sent a letter to Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell, warning him that LatinoJustice PRLDEF is prepared to sue the state or any of its agencies if the Governor authorizes law enforcement agents to conduct investigations into the immigration status of persons they stop or arrest.

Such a policy could be used to harass Latinos and other immigrants, and would result in massive racial profiling by state and local law enforcement agencies.

In the letter, Perales writes:

“As the recent decision in United States v. Arizona makes clear, such an action would violate federal law. My office will challenge in court any effort by you, the State Legislature, or any law enforcement agency in the State to promulgate or engage in such a policy and seek damages for those subjected to such an investigation.”

Prince William County Delegate Robert G. Marshall requested that the Governor adopt a state-wide policy that would allow law enforcement agents to inquire about the immigration status of anyone who is stopped or arrested. The Governor has yet to reply to the request.

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