Groups want Florida counties to ignore ICE detainers

A coalition of civil rights and immigrant rights groups has sent letters to officials in 62 Florida counties calling for an end to local law enforcement agencies detaining people for alleged civil immigration violations at the request of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Shalini Goel Agarwal, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida, said in a news release Monday that ICE detainers violate the basic principle that the government cannot put someone in jail without due process.

The letters and attached legal documents say requests for "ICE detainers" or "ICE holds" are not legally binding. The letters also argue that the detentions threaten community safety and raise serious constitutional problems that could open enforcing agencies up to legal liability.

In recent months, Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties have all amended their policies in honoring ICE detainers.