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List of Undocumented Immigrants Leaked in Utah

A list of over 1,300 potential undocumented immigrants was leaked to the government and media outlets of Utah this week. The list, which includes the names, dates of birth, phone numbers, and addresses of the immigrants, as well as the due dates of any pregnant women, was accompanied by a cover letter urging “immediate deportation proceedings against the people listed.” The cover letter was written by a group calling themselves the Concerned Citizens of the United States, and it is unclear how the information on the list was obtained. An investigation is underway to see if any of the information was leaked by state employees. Many in Utah’s Hispanic community are highly concerned for their safety and that of their loved ones. The New York Times reports that list has not been published in full and that immigrant advocacy organizations like Proyecto Latino de Utah are receiving many calls from worried immigrants asking if their names are on the list. Angie Welling, a spokeswoman for Governor Gary Herbert, told the New York Times that, “Any release of private information of this nature, especially the depth and breadth of it, is concerning … The governor wants to be sure that a state agency wasn’t involved, and if it was, to make sure it doesn’t happen again, and to get to the bottom of who was responsible.” Investigations are underway of all state agencies, with a specific focus on the Department of Workforce Services, the Department of Health and the Department of Human Services. The Associated Press reports that punishment could result with a $1,000 fine and six months in jail for releasing a public record and a $5,000 fine and five years in prison for stealing a record. Paul Murphy, spokesman for Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff, said, “The people who sent out this information – if they are interested in making sure the law is followed – they should identify who they are and explain in detail how they obtained this information so we know whether or not they violated the law,” reported the Associated Press.

Sources:

New York Times 4/4/10, 7/14/10; Associated Press 7/14/10