Of Course Landlords Should Be Able to Report Illegal Alien Tenants



If a landlord suspects their tenant of a crime, they can call the police.  Not only is this totally unremarkable, it’s probably the wise and proper course of action.  So why would it be any different for a landlord to report illegal aliens, who are engaged in continuous law-breaking simply by remaining in this country, to the proper federal authorities?  It shouldn’t be, but the open-borders crowd thinks it’s some kind of outrage, and from coast to coast they’re trying to impose severe consequences for this perfectly reasonable exercise of common sense.

Unsurprisingly, California actually passed a law in 2017, Assembly (AB) 291, that bans landlords from reporting their tenants to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

And now, to what should surely be the surprise of no one, an illegal alien tenant in California is using that very law to sue her landlord.  According to illegal alien Estela Cano’s August 21 lawsuit, threats to contact ICE were part of “months of abuse,” but according to landlord Melinda Teruel, Cano and her family caused at least $16,000 in damages to the property.  Teruel gave Cano a 30-day eviction notice in July 2017, more than a year ago.  Only in California?  One can only hope.

But if Washington, D.C., City Councilmember Brandon Todd (D) gets his way, it won’t be.  His bill, B22-0877, introduced on June 26, would go even further than California.  It would actually make reporting or threatening to report illegal aliens to ICE by landlords, employers, or others under some circumstances a felony, extortion, punishable by up to ten years in prison.

And if you rent to ICE itself rather than to illegal aliens?  Like Chuck Prather in St. Petersburg, Florida, you can probably look forward to being publicly tarred as a “predator” and subjected to all sorts of other abuse, harassment and threats that border on stalking.  Prather’s businesses and home were plastered with fliers saying he “directly profits from sexual violence, physical abuse and the caging of undocumented people”, while a nearby sidewalk was spray-painted “EVICT ICE.”

Already, the rational rejection of policies like this one has begun.  Even in Illinois, Governor Bruce Rauner (R) – who signed the State’s sanctuary law, apparently thought legislation like California’s went too far and vetoed it on August 24.  And in the little Nebraska town of Scribner, an initiative will be on the ballot in November to require proof of legal status by anyone seeking to rent residential property—an initiative modeled on nearby Fremont’s similar ordinance, which the courts upheld as constitutional back in 2013.

About Author

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Dave joined FAIR in 2017 after more than ten years as an Assistant State Attorney in Broward County, Florida. His prosecutorial experience covered trial litigation at the misdemeanor and felony levels, drug court and mental health court, and two years as an intake attorney in the juvenile division working closely with law enforcement. Before this, he was a legislative analyst/staff attorney with the Judiciary Committee of the Florida House of Representatives, where he assisted state legislators in ensuring the effectiveness and constitutionality of legislation on a wide variety of subject matter. In both capacities, he often dealt with the interaction of state law and immigration. Dave holds BAs in History and International Relations from American University and a JD from Tulane University Law School.

7 Comments

  1. avatar

    This violates the 1st amendment. Specifically redress of grievances. When N.Y. passed a law that punished people for dialing 911 too often, it was thrown out for that reason.

  2. avatar

    Landlords are forbidden to ask anyone if they are in the country legally by HUD Fair housing requirements when they are renting their properties. BUT, there is nothing to forbid landlords from reporting illegals if they suspect illegal activity….

  3. avatar
    Tea Party Immigration Coalition on

    Landlords should be REQUIRED to report them, asking for proof of citizenship.
    It’s that bad .

  4. avatar

    That is just basic COMMON FRICKING SENSE. But the liberal left is ONLY…I say again ONLY…interested in votes. Votes from the MILLIONS of undocumented and ILLEGAL ALIENS that they need to get elected and MOST IMPORTANTLY to STAY ELECTED. That’s the reason for all this “open borders” nonsense. And the HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS of dollars and resources it costs taxpayers to fund that insanity. Millions of dollars that NEED to be spent on our Veterans, our public schools, our health care system, our senior citizens…the list goes on and on. The liberal left has an absolutely UNLIMITED capacity for SHAMELESS HYPOCRISY and as a Veteran, a person who signed a LEGALLY BINDING CONTRACT to sacrifice MY LIFE for this country, they make me physically ill.

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