The ACLU of Massachusetts today filed a lawsuit demanding information about a recent U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) presentation to members of the National Sheriffs’ Association. The presentation was an “immigration update” from ICE’s Acting Deputy Director Matthew Albence.
Albence delivered the address to the National Sheriffs’ Association Legal Affairs Committee during the organization’s annual winter conference in Washington, D.C in February. After being made aware of the presentation from a Bristol County Sheriff’s Office tweet, the ACLU filed a public records request seeking records of the address, including written remarks, slides, handouts, and recordings. The request also includes correspondence between ICE and Massachusetts sheriffs about the address.
“In recent years, ICE has detained and deported record numbers of people from the United States with a clear disregard for civil rights and people’s lives,” said Carol Rose, executive director of the ACLU of Massachusetts. “Too often, ICE’s enforcement practices tear families apart and undermine community trust in law enforcement. Every step of the way, the ACLU has fought inhumane immigration policies; now, we are seeking information that could clarify the relationship between ICE and local law enforcement agencies here in Massachusetts.”
The lawsuit comes days after President Trump announced that Kirstjen Nielsen resigned as the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, and after he withdrew his own nominee to lead ICE—Acting Director Ronald Vitiello—because he wants someone “tougher” to lead the country’s immigration enforcement agency. Albence, who delivered the February address, is second-in-command of the agency.