Attorney General Paxton has joined an Arizona-led cert-stage amicus brief petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down a recent decision by the San Francisco-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit that threatens public safety across the country.  

In United States v. Hansen, the Ninth Circuit struck down a federal statute that makes it illegal for an individual to “encourage” or “induce” illegal immigration. By striking the statute down on overbreadth grounds, the Ninth Circuit has created a dangerous precedent that threatens to do more than just increase illegal immigration.  

Historically, the federal government has used the statute to prosecute smuggling and other activities that facilitate illegal immigration. With the record-breaking rate of illegal aliens flooding across our border, this decision hampers law enforcement authorities’ ability to prevent further illegal immigration.  

Furthermore, all 50 states have laws that use language like the statute in question. The Ninth Circuit’s decision labeling such language unconstitutionally overbroad also puts at risk these laws that have been designed to prevent and punish serious crimes.  

The brief states: “More than ever, illegal immigration is a serious problem imposing tremendous economic, social, and fiscal burdens on the States—including border states like Arizona. The decision below, if left undisturbed, will undoubtedly impede the enforcement of criminal immigration laws nationwide, leading to significant adverse consequences for the States. The decision below also implicates Amici States’ well-recognized interest in enforcing their own criminal laws.” 

To read the full brief, click here.