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Substandard and abusive conditions in immigration detention “are of the utmost importance,” a federal judge in Manhattan said Thursday, ruling that the Department of Homeland Security’s 2 ½-year delay in responding to a petition for legally enforceable regulations was “unreasonable as a matter of law.”

The judge, Denny Chin of Federal District Court in Manhattan, ordered the Obama administration to grant or deny the petition asking for detention rules within 30 days. He denied the government’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit, filed last year by two former immigration detainees and two advocacy agencies, seeking to force a response.http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/27/nyregion/27immig.html?_r=1&ref=nyregion

By Nina Bernstein -- New York Times

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