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New Texas Law Will Allow Police to Arrest Undocumented Immigrants

 Posted on December 27, 2023 in Immigration

TX immigration lawyerOver the past several years, immigration officials in the United States have struggled to deal with an increasing number of migrants who are attempting to enter the country by crossing the border from Mexico. In response to this issue, the state of Texas has taken a number of measures intended to prevent people from entering the country without authorization. Recently, the state passed a new law that will allow law enforcement officials to perform arrests of undocumented immigrants and charge them with criminal offenses.

With the challenges that immigrants face when entering the United States or seeking permanent residence, it is important to ensure that they have legal representation as they address these issues. An attorney with experience in immigration law can help immigrants meet their legal requirements as they apply for visas or Green Cards, while also addressing any legal concerns that could affect their ability to continue living in the U.S.

Provisions of the New Law

As part of his ongoing efforts to address illegal immigration, Governor Greg Abbott pushed through legislation that will allow for arrests of undocumented immigrants. Typically, federal immigration officials will handle these issues. They may detain immigrants who are suspected of violating immigration laws, and they may initiate deportation proceedings to determine whether a person should be removed from the United States and sent back to their country of origin.

Under the new law, entering Texas from Mexico without passing through a legal port of entry is now considered a misdemeanor offense. A second offense will result in felony charges. Local and state police officers, including county sheriffs and Texas Rangers, may arrest immigrants who are suspected of violating this law. These arrests may be performed at any time within two years after a person enters the United States illegally

The law also allows courts to order immigrants to return to Mexico or face criminal prosecution if they do not agree to leave the country. While many immigrants seek asylum upon entering the United States, the law allows for prosecution in cases where asylum has not yet been granted. The law will take effect in March of 2024.

While Governor Abbott has stated that this new law is necessary to address illegal immigration, critics believe that it violates the U.S. Constitution, which gives the federal government authority to address immigration issues. They have raised concerns that it could lead to racial profiling as law enforcement officials seek to prosecute people who they believe may be illegal immigrants. Some local law enforcement officials have also opposed the law because jails and courts may not have the resources to address criminal cases for large numbers of immigrants. Courts will review the law, and it may eventually be addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Contact Our Plano Immigration Lawyer

Immigrants in Texas who may be affected by the new law will need to understand how they can protect their rights, resolve issues related to visas and Green Cards, and defend against deportation. At Law Office of Jae Lee, our Dallas immigration attorney can help immigrants ensure that they will be able to address these matters correctly. To learn how we can assist with issues related to immigration, contact us at 214-295-3014 and schedule a free consultation.

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