Federal judge blocks Utah citizenship check law

SALT LAKE CITY — A federal judge has blocked a new Utah immigration law that lets police check the citizenship status of anyone they arrest.

U.S. District Judge Clark Waddoups ruled today in Salt Lake City hours after the law went into effect.

Two civil rights groups had sued to stop the law, contending it was modeled after an Arizona law currently before the federal courts and its implementation could lead to racial profiling.

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff says the law is constitutional.

The law requires police to verify a person’s U.S. immigration status if they are arrested for a serious crime. Immigration checks are optional for lesser crimes.


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