Trump Administration Must Face Claims by Immigrant Children

(Bloomberg) -- The Trump administration lost its bid to throw out a lawsuit by immigrant children who say they are denied access to lawyers or given a hearing to challenge their confinement by the Office of Refugee Resettlement.

U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee at a hearing Friday in Los Angeles denied the government’s request to dismiss the lawsuit.

The case was brought by seven children who are detained as unaccompanied minors and who have relatives in the U.S. that want to take care of them. The claim that the U.S. violates their constitutional due process rights could provide an extra legal hurdle for the Trump administration’s plans to get around a 1997 agreement that restricts the government’s ability to detain immigrant children.

In a July ruling, Gee denied the U.S.’s request to modify the so-called Flores settlement as "wholly without merit" and faulted the administration for an “ill-considered executive action” that led to the separation of children from their parents when families were apprehended trying to cross into the U.S. at the Mexican border.

The case is Lucas R. v. Azar, 18-cv-05741, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Los Angeles).

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