amicus brief supporting journalist Mr. Duran Ortega’s plea for asylum. He is currently challenging his deportation to El Salvador. The circumstances surrounding the journalist’s arrest and detention suggest that it was based primarily on his reporting about how the Memphis Police Department and U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) were cooperating, despite their public statements to the contrary.
The amicus brief reiterated that (a) Mr. Ortega is entitled to First Amendment protections, including the right to speak freely, and (b) his detention was based on retaliatory and censorial motives from both agencies. In addition, it outlines several ways in which the magistrate judge’s report recommending dismissal of the habeas petition was flawed. Click here to review the amicus brief filed in June 2018. In May 2018, NHMC also joined 25 organizations in a letter to ICE demanding Ortega’s release.