OCTOBER 25, 2010
A federal appellate court has ruled that an advocacy group representing illegal immigrant day laborers can collect legal fees from the city it successfully sued over a law banning workers from seeking employment on the street.
Issued by the San Francisco-based 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the ruling is slap in the face for yet another local government trying to curb illegal immigration. The case involves the southern
Responding to residents’ complaints,
To avoid costly litigation the city repealed the measure a month later and, though both parties agreed to the settlement, the illegal alien advocacy group demanded attorney’s fees. When a lower court denied the request, the group appealed and this month a three-judge panel from the notoriously liberal 9th Circuit Court granted the request.
In reversing the denial for attorney’s fees, the court said that La Associacion De Trabajadores was the “prevailing party” based on the favorable settlement and therefore should be compensated for legal costs. The group “received relief in the form of a judicially enforceable agreement requiring (the defendants) to adhere to policies respecting day laborers and their First Amendment rights, relief ATLF sought in its complaint,” according to the ruling.
Laws in other parts other country designed to ban day laborers have also been defeated in court, though awarding legal costs seems to take it a step beyond the norm. Earlier this year a federal judge in
A similar ordinance in Mamaroneck, a working class village located about 25 miles north of
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