The federal government sued Tuesday to block a California law that empowers the state’s attorney general to inspect facilities holding immigrants facing deportation. It’s one of three laws the U.S. Department of Justice is seeking to overturn, saying they are a deliberate effort to obstruct federal immigration enforcement.
The lawsuit came the day before U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions spoke to a meeting of California law enforcement officials, where he fiercely criticized the recent state laws as "irrational, unfair, unconstitutional policies."
In the complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Sacramento, federal officials wrote that Assembly Bill 103 “constitutes an improper, significant intrusion into federal enforcement of the immigration laws.”
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, at a press conference Wednesday, defended the law granting state oversight of ICE facilities.
“Our residents and our public officials have a right to know the conditions under which people are detained in these facilities,” Becerra said. “Those conditions include whether they are be treated properly, whether they have access to necessary medical care, whether they have access to an attorney, if they have an attorney, and whether or not they are being afforded due process. ”