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The Florida Times-Union
September 6, 2014

'Rocket dockets' leaving immigrant children with little advocacy
By Dianne Solis


More than 63,000 children have been apprehended this fiscal year crossing the border without parents. Many were sent on the dangerous journey by their families, who hope they will find refuge from the poverty and gang violence of their home countries. Some come looking for their parents or other family already in the U.S. The number of apprehensions this year is already eight times that in 2008. But the flow is slowing: In July, about 5,500 children were picked up, compared with 10,000 in June. Now the children are going through the nationís immigration courts, where there is a backlog of about 375,000 cases of adults and juveniles from around the world. Juvenile cases make up about a tenth of that backlog. LENGTHY BACKLOG In Dallas, the five immigration judges, who serve North Texas and the entire state of Oklahoma, have a backlog of about 5,200 adult and juvenile cases, according to TRAC.


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