ACLU Attorneys Named '2014 California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year' for Work in Landmark Case
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SAN FRANCISCO – American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants' Rights Project Staff Attorneys Ahilan Arulantham and Michael Tan were named California Lawyer magazine's "2014 California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year" for their outstanding work in Rodriguez v. Robbins. This honor recognizes legal accomplishments that had a significant impact in 2013.
ACLU of Southern California Staff Attorney Michael Kaufman. Jayashri Srikantiah, Stanford Law School Immigrants' Rights Clinic, Sean A. Commons, Cody J. Jacobs and Jonathan P. Feingold, current and former pro bono counsel from Sidley Austin LLP, also received the honor. Deputy Director of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project Judy Rabinovitz was honored for her work as New York co-counsel as was ACLU of Southern California Senior Paralegal Geneva Tien.
In last year's landmark Rodriguez ruling, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals established that the government must provide rigorous bond hearings to immigrants when they have been held in immigration prison for at least six months while their deportation cases remain pending. The decision has benefited thousands of immigrants throughout the western United States, all of whom have now won the most basic procedural right for the detained immigrants – a right to a hearing where they can argue for release on bond.
"Our team is honored to be recognized by California Lawyer magazine," said Tan. "We urge the Obama administration to adopt Rodriguez nationwide and provide bond hearings to everyone in long-term immigration lockup. Nobody should be held for months or years without a hearing to determine if they need to be locked up in the first place."
The honorees will be featured in the March 2014 issue of California Lawyer.