Press Releases

CAIR-NY Welcomes Court Ruling Prohibiting ICE Arrests at Courthouses

(NEW YORK, N.Y., 6/11/2020) – The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NY), a chapter of the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today welcomed the ruling of the United States District Court (Southern District of New York) that ICE could no longer target, arrest and deport undocumented immigrants attempting to access courthouses. 

The lawsuit was filed by New York Attorney General Letitia James and Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez. CAIR-NY applauded all the parties involved, including activists from the Immigrant Defense Project, that worked tirelessly to ensure that NYS courts are universally accessible. 

Prior to the Trump administration, the practice of making civil arrests in and around courthouses was incredibly rare. The court decision notes that President Trump’s Executive Orders, focused on making “immigration enforcement” a priority, invigorated ICE to adopt this draconian practice. In reaching the decision, the Judge held that the courts should not have to deal with “disruptions and intimidations” imposed by Federal Agencies like ICE, and that, in fact; they violate constitutional mandates of federalism and the independence of the courts. 

SEE: Judge to ICE: Don’t Ambush Immigrants at New York Courthouses

SEE Court Ruling:

In a statement, CAIR-NY Executive Director Afaf Nasher stated:

“CAIR-NY applauds Attorney General James and District Attorney Gonzales and welcomes their work to embolden New York City’s status as a Sanctuary City. Our local law enforcement, including our courthouses, should not cooperate with federal agencies in the targeting and detention of our undocumented neighbors and fellow New Yorkers. Our courthouses are not a strategic battleground, they are institutions of justice, to which all deserve fair, uninterrupted access.”

Echoing these sentiments, CAIR-NY Litigation Director Ahmed Mohamed stated:

“ICE’s practice of preying on our courthouse grounds violates our commitment to separation of powers and hinders the free and full functioning of the courts. Courthouse arrests are unlawful and harmful. The purpose of courthouse arrests is to instill fear and deprive immigrant New Yorkers of their due process rights. Congress and the New York legislature must act to codify these protections and ensure that our courthouses remain accessible to all.”

CAIR-NY is dedicated to ensuring that our institutions of justice work for all people.

SEE: CAIR-NY Welcomes Queens Judge’s Ruling Reinstating Two South Asian Muslim Candidates To The Ballot

SEE: CAIR-NY, ECBA File Civil Rights Class Action Lawsuit Against City of Yonkers for the Forcible Removable of Religious Head Covering

CAIR-NY is a chapter of America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization.

CAIR-NY’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR-NY es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.


CONTACT:  CAIR-NY Executive Director Afaf Nasher,, 917-669-4006; CAIR-NY Litigation Director Ahmed Mohamed,, 646-481-2103

Share on facebook
Share on twitter