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Court Allows Release Of ICE Detainees at Adelanto Through Bail Process

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FILE PHOTO: The Adelanto detention facility photographed in November 2013. (John Moore/Getty Images)
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Immigrant detainees at the Adelanto ICE Processing Center are now filing applications to be released on bail from the facility due to concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic.

The applications come after a federal judge allowed the start of a bail process as part of a class-action lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Southern California. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had appealed the order to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, but last week, the 9th circuit denied that appeal.

“We are thrilled that there’s an avenue for class members to seek release,” said Minju Cho, an attorney at ACLU of Southern California.

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Cho said the organization has filed bail applications for 43 detainees at the facility since last week. The court order allows for up to 15 applications a day.

A spokesperson for ICE said the agency cannot comment on pending litigation. He said the agency has “reduced the population at the Adelanto ICE Processing Center from 1,687 in January to approximately 875 as of [Monday], which reflects a 48% reduction.”

In April, the ACLU of Southern California filed the class action suit against ICE, asking the government to reduce the population at the San Bernardino County facility over concerns about the coronavirus. The same judge, Judge Terry Hatter Jr., ordered the government to start releasing detainees, but the federal government appealed the order and the case is still pending.

As of today, Adelanto have had 14 detainees test positive for COVID-19.

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