Justice Department lawyers and illegal immigrants won a temporary reprieve this week after Judge Andrew S. Hanen blocked his own order sending the lawyers back to remedial ethics classes, and ordering the government to turn over information on tens of thousands of illegal immigrants who were erroneously granted a three-year deportation amnesty.
Judge Hanen said he’ll hear new arguments in August, and until then he issued a stay.
He also gave the Justice Department a chance to suggest its own punishment for having repeatedly misled the federal court.
The lawyers enraged the judge after they repeatedly told him no part of President Obama’s 2014 deportation amnesty, known as deferred action, was in effect. But the administration had in fact been granting three-year work permits and stays of deportation to some illegal immigrants under one of the 2014 policies that modified a 2012 amnesty already in effect.
The broader amnesty policy is pending before the Supreme Court, but Judge Hanen is still trying to figure out what to do about the lawyers’ behavior and how to handle the more than 100,000 illegal immigrants granted three-year amnesties, instead of the two-year approvals he’d thought they were getting.
Judge Hanen had initially ordered the government to turn over information identifying the illegal immigrants who got the three-year amnesty, but Hispanic-rights groups objected and appealed, saying illegal immigrants were assured privacy by the Obama administration.
Under the judge’s latest order, the government no longer has to turn over the names — for now.