Laxalt joins brief challenging Calif. sanctuary cities |

Laxalt joins brief challenging Calif. sanctuary cities

Nevada Appeal staff report

Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt joined an 18-state coalition of attorneys generals and other elected officials in filing a friend-of-the-court brief in federal court supporting the U.S. Department of Justice in its lawsuit challenging three California sanctuary cities laws on Monday.

The three California laws challenged by the federal government attempt to oversee federal immigration enforcement, prevent private employers from cooperating with federal law enforcement, and limit when state and local law-enforcement agencies may cooperate with federal law enforcement on immigration matters.

The States’ brief highlights a 2012 case where the U.S. Supreme Court ruled states can’t interfere with the enforcement of federal immigration law. In that case (Arizona v. United States), the state of California agreed state laws can’t stand in the way of enforcement of federal immigration law.

Nevada’s law enforcement officials, including all 17 currently elected county sheriffs, have consistently opposed sanctuary-city policies that would prevent compliance with federal law and compromise public safety. In the vast majority of cases, an individual must be arrested for committing a crime and booked into a jail or detention facility before Nevada law enforcement agencies check whether the individual is sought by federal immigration authorities and, if so, alert those federal authorities. Sanctuary-city policies that prohibit this communication allow violent offenders to be released back into the community.

“California’s sanctuary policies challenged by the Department of Justice prevent federal and local law enforcement from working together to protect their communities,” said Laxalt. “These policies are especially dangerous for neighboring states like Nevada by making it easier for those not lawfully in this country and with violent criminal histories to evade law enforcement and travel out of state.”

In addition to Nevada, other participating states include: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine Governor Paul R. LePage, Michigan, Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and West Virginia.