Matt Cameron Profile picture
Oct 3, 2017 23 tweets 6 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
1/ When I say that @ICEgov lies, this is not lawyer hyperbole. They lie. Constantly. In the face of evidence & good taste. Today's example:
2/ @ICEgov New England PR office released a retaliatory statement last week re: a client who was in the news. (I'm not using his name here)
3/ The statement said that he had a misdemeanor criminal record. He has no criminal record. (Here's a screencap from his MA CORI.)
4/ Statement also alleged that he'd "applied for benefits." Only immigration benefits (incl. work auth.) but clearly aimed at @FoxNews, etc.
5/ Imagine finding that the govt has publicly libeled you a criminal deadbeat. Having this be 1st thing in any Google search for your name.
6/ I wrote to @ICEgov press person, attaching copy of client's clean criminal rec to seek a retraction.
7/ Response: not my job. But dealing with the press, issuing statements, and correcting those statements is *literally* his job.
8/ My client is a poor, undocumented Central American refugee. Imagine if he were a white, European immigrant and @icegov had just done this
9/ Fun fact: Thanks to Fed. Tort Claims Act, you can't sue @ICEgov (or any other fed agency) for libel/defamation. They know this.
10/ I had never fully contemplated the horror of that FTCA exception before. But here we are. A good man's name destroyed, w/no recourse.
11/ I sent this email to @icegov five days ago. No response. Filed an administrative complaint same day. Nothing.
12/ @ICEgov has never been accountable to the public. But it used to care what you thought, at least a little. Those days ended 1/20/17.
13/ "Is there any flexibility in this system left at all?" I asked an officer on Fri. He glared up at me. "You know there isn't," he said.
14/ 5,000 active @ICEgov agents on the ground right now. Trump wants to triple this to 15K, and they are already loosening hiring standards.
15/ US already has the infrastructure for a massive immigration police state (#ThanksObama). Trump is only making it real, and irreversible.
16/ @Icegov routinely kidnaps teenagers and holds them w/o bond while refusing to release evidence against them. It denies access to counsel
17/ It denies access to medical treatment, to family visits. Barely feeds detainees. Abuses them constantly. Death & sexual assault common.
18/ The phrase "family detention centers" is really all you need to know. (That and their abysmal record re: trans detainees.)
19/ So there are far worse problems w/@ICEgov than casual libel--but that's the one I have today. Thanks for listening. #heretostay
Slight correction: any federal *law enforcement* agency. I should have fit that in there, an important distinction
PS: heading into @ICEgov detention now to visit clients for a couple of hrs. Open to q's here, and will have more to share shortly.
Huh. Amazed by response to this thread. Realizing that maybe "ICE constantly lies to immigrants, attys, & public" is news to most Americans.
UPDATE (10/6): PR guy now insists no point in seeking a retraction at this point bc story is "too old." (It was published 9/26.)

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More from @matt_cam

Sep 25, 2018
1/ One of the worst parts of the proposed new DHS "public charge" rule would resurrect a 400-yr-old idea, punish lower-income immigrants, AND deliver a massive new giveaway to Wall Street.

Not seeing much out there on this piece right now, so here's what you need to know:
2/ The idea of a "public charge bond" goes back to the earliest colonial days. If someone coming over from Europe didn't seem like they would be able to support themselves, the ship's captain would have to put up a given amount of money to keep them off the dole or take them back
3/ As part of the "Passenger Cases," SCOTUS struck down the city of Boston's attempt to collect public charge bonds from ship captains as unconstitutional in 1849, finding that only the federal government had this kind of power. But it didn't actually exercise it until 1882.
Read 16 tweets
Aug 27, 2018
Appalling, but no surprise here.

No member of Congress should ever be able publicly comment on immigration--alone work on imm legislation--without answering one simple question:

"How does an undocumented person get a greencard?"
Not, like, step-by-step but generally what are the paths available under current law. If the answer is any variation on "get in line like everybody else," an automatic 6-month bar on any immigration rhetoric/legislation until finishing a mandatory US Immigration 101 course.
If you or your staff are not willing to take the time to understand the system we have, there is no place at the table for you in working toward a new one. None.
Read 4 tweets
Aug 22, 2018
1/ Ten years ago this June a recent immigrant was sentenced to life for the vicious, violent, cold-blooded murder of his wife and infant daughter before trying to flee to his home country.

Here's what *didn't* happen:…

--@bostonherald didn't run an angry editorial blaming our imm. vetting processes

--No one used this tragedy to call for an end to all British immigration

--The media never used a booking photo; always images like this one to remind us of his wealth & whiteness
3/ Neil Entwistle shot his wife in the head, and then his infant daughter in the stomach as she lay sleeping in her mother's arms. He then withdrew every dollar they had and fled to London. Mass state troopers grabbed him on a tube platform.
Read 12 tweets
Aug 22, 2018
If you're ever up for listening in on what your local Deep State is up to, may I recommend one of my favorite eateries in #Boston: the cafe in the JFK fed. building. Decent, reasonably-priced food with a nice view and plenty of space to relax while waiting for #immigrationcourt
1/ Two VA managers are having a lunch meeting nearby, talking through how to deliver faster/better services to a 94-year-old veteran & review implementation of a new process.

A USCIS officer is having a quick salad before another round of immigration interviews. In + out in 10
2/ Friends, this is your actual "Deep State."

Career public servants who take pride in keeping their agencies on mission and making the best use of tax dollars doing it, no matter the President or policies. Dedication, commitment, and institutional knowledge. We can't lose them.
Read 8 tweets
Aug 4, 2018

The people running it & the President directing its policies are also bad.

But ICE was still bad when the President was better.

Its purpose is bad.

Its mandate is bad.

Its unaccountability is bad.

Okay, so any questions on that


Maybe *not* have a rogue, unaccountable, armed secret police force & threat of indefinite detention in a disgusting American gulag archipelago terrorizing immigrant communities in the name of enforcing civil immigration orders

Coordinated internal immigration enforcement is a very new idea in US history. But apart from that: we've only been doing it this way for 15 years. If you are doing anything to make this model inevitable, you're on the wrong side
Read 6 tweets
Jul 30, 2018
1/ Live-tweeting from the Boston immigration court's detained docket:

Detainee is on video. I can't see his face but he has a heavy Massachusetts accent--you'd never know he wasn't born here. He is seeking bond.
2/ He has a series of drug-related convictions together with a record consistent with an addiction. Judge leaves his bond at "no bond" without hearing from him.
3/ Like most people on the detained docket, he doesn't have and can't afford a lawyer. (No appointed counsel here.) He is now speaking for himself.
Read 32 tweets

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