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A Georgia bills allows police to report undocumented immigrants

Georgia state senators passed a bill Monday, Feb. 26 that puts many undocumented residents at risk of deportation.

If SB 452 passes successfully through the Georgia House of Representatives, then both officers of the court and law enforcement agencies will have additional responsibilities on their hands. They'll be authorized to report any contact they have with a suspect who's also a legal immigrant to the appropriate immigration office.

The Republican-backed bill, one of its main proponents argues, aims to send a message to illegal immigrants. They hope that its passing will convey to them that, if they commit a crime, then they will be dealt with both within the criminal justice system and by federal immigration authorities.

Opponents to SB 452 protested on state house grounds in Atlanta after hearing of the passing of the senate bill. They contend that many belonging to the state's immigrant communities already lack trust when it comes to dealing with police. They note that, if these same individuals are made to fear calling on police for help, then it will likely adversely affect the communities we all live in.

Others also contend that the bill is unconstitutional. They argue that it's illegal in the U.S. for an individual to be detained for one thing, yet arrested for something else.

As for the proponents of the bill, they argue that getting this bill passed is necessary to ensure the public's safety. They contend that passing this legislation ensures that the rule of law will be upheld as well.

While the bill will pass on and be heard by the Georgia House, it's unclear when that will happen.

If you've been arrested and are in this country illegally, then a Norcross criminal defense attorney can advise you of your rights in your case.

Source: WABE, "Georgia Senate passes bill to prompt immigrant deportations," Johnny Kauffman, Feb. 27, 2018

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