ACLU of N.H. Sues for Release of Somali Asylum Seeker Detained for More Than Two Years

May 1, 2019

The ACLU of New Hampshire is suing the U.S. government on behalf of a man they say has been in immigration detention for more than two years.


Mahamed Ahmed-Cali, a Somali native, was detained at a California port of entry in 2016 after requesting asylum.


Since then, immigration officials have transferred him to several states, including Louisiana, Florida, Alabama and, most recently, New Hampshire at the Strafford County Department of Corrections.


"This, frankly, is one of the worst cases of abuse I have seen on the part of ICE in the state of New Hampshire,” said ACLU-NH Legal Director Gilles Bissonnette. Ahmed-Cali has no criminal record and entered the U.S. legally, Bissonnette said. “He's being transported everywhere, all across the country by ICE, and this is a regular thing that ICE does."


Ahmed-Cali was one of 92 people who were part of a failed deportation attempt in 2017 which saw detainees shackled for two days on an airplane.


The ACLU is asking for his immediate release.