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March 26, 2017

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Report: Judge says ‘sanctuary’ jail led to immigration sweep

Updated Monday, March 20, 2017 | 5:05 p.m.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A federal magistrate judge in Texas says immigration agents told him that a major operation in Austin was ordered as a result of the local sheriff adopting "sanctuary" policies in the local jail.

The Austin American-Statesman reports U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew Austin made the comments in open court Monday. He says he was told by U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement officials ahead of large-scale arrests in February that a "big operation" could be expected.

In audio of the court hearing, the judge says he was told the operation was the result of the Travis County sheriff saying her jail would no longer comply with all immigration detainer requests.

Federal officials have previously defended the arrests as business as usual. ICE didn't address the judge's claims in a statement Monday.