The American Civil Liberties Union of New Hampshire is suing the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for failing to provide records relating to immigration enforcement.
The Maine and Vermont ACLU affiliates are also plaintiffs on the case.
The civil liberties advocate says it filed a Freedom of Information Act request in September of 2017 asking for records relating to ICE and CBP enforcement actions in Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire.
The ACLU says it has so far received a one-page response showing the number of arrests made but no records or communications relating to specific cases.
“It's important for the public to know what immigration officials are doing in our communities, that's what our FOIA request was about and that's what this lawsuit is about,” says Gilles Bissonnette, Legal Director for the New Hampshire ACLU.
Bissonnette points to ICE's attempt to deport dozens of Indonesians living in the Seacoast region as part of the reason behind the request for information.
“Since the incoming administration, we've seen unprecedented immigration enforcement activities in this area,” Bissonnette says. “We want documents concerning those activities.”