Bond Hearings for Detained Immigrants Get Top U.S. Court Review

The U.S. Supreme Court will take up a new test of border security and immigrant rights, agreeing to review a ruling that said people facing deportation are entitled to a bond hearing after six months of detention.

The Obama administration is challenging the federal appeals court ruling, saying it would undercut the government’s border-control efforts. The administration says the ruling threatens to free people who were apprehended while crossing the border illegally, as well as unauthorized immigrants who have been convicted of crimes.

In requiring bond hearings every six months, the San Francisco-based appeals court said indefinite detention would raise serious constitutional questions.

The appeals court also required the government to meet a tough legal test to justify the continued detention of an alien. The three-judge panel said the government must show "clear and convincing evidence" that a person is either a flight risk or a danger to the community.

The ruling came in a class action lawsuit pressed by immigrants being detained by the Department of Homeland Security in California.

The Supreme Court will hear the case in the nine-month term that starts in October, with arguments likely around the time of the Nov. 8 election. Border security and immigration policy have become pivotal issues in the presidential race between Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton.

The case is Jennings v. Rodriguez, 15-1204.

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