Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Private Attorney Laptops And The Elizabeth Immigration Court

For a few years, ICE counsel in the immigration court at the Elizabeth Detention Center have enjoyed and exploited the unfair advantage of using laptops in court even though lawyers representing immigrants have not been allowed to use their laptops.

On September 12, 2012, the ICE Public Advocate announced that ICE will allow private attorneys or accredited representatives appearing before an immigration judge on behalf of detainees to bring a laptop into the immigration courtroom that is located in a detention center.  This should mean that ICE will set up a method to allow immigration lawyers to bring in laptops (with air cards) to the immigration court in the Elizabeth Detention Center.

The announcement says the method to obtain approval will not cover any iPads, iPods, smartphones, Blackberries, or other electronic devices.  They also say additional rules appear in the request form that will ultimately be available from the field office covering the location of the courtroom.

There is no indication about how the immigration court system will make up for the years of unfairness when ICE lawyers brought in their laptops but immigration lawyers were not allowed to bring in similar equipment.


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