The Trump administration is reportedly crafting proposals that would make it extremely difficult for migrants from Latin America to seek asylum in the U.S., but in the meantime, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has found creative ways to keep asylum seekers locked up and separated from their children. On Wednesday, Kate Lincoln-Goldfinch, a lawyer representing a Honduran woman who has already passed the first, credible-fear stage of her asylum claim process, told NPR on Wednesday that her client is still being held apart from her kids, in apparent violation of orders from federal judges.
"Lincoln-Goldfinch says she and other immigration attorneys believe this is ICE's new policy to deny bonds or set them so high, in excess of $10,000, they're out of reach for immigrants who arrive broke," NPR's John Burnett said. "She thinks it's part of the government's campaign to stop what it calls the catch and release of unauthorized immigrants." ICE denied targeting asylum seekers or setting bonds punitively, but the numbers suggest otherwise. In his ruling Monday, U.S. District Judge James Boasberg in Washington, D.C., said ICE has to follow its own directives to parole, or release, asylum seekers who pass the credible-fear hurdle. In five ICE districts, President Trump's ICE has been paroling essentially zero of those asylum seekers, versus 90 percent under former President Barack Obama. You can listen to Burnett's full report below. Peter Weber