Alabama immigration law under review

Oct. 8, 2011 at 12:39 PM

MONTGOMERY, Ala., Oct. 8 (UPI) -- An Alabama state law targeting illegal immigrants has come under federal court scrutiny with a Tuesday deadline to justify it.

One of the law's requirements is that students provide a birth certificate in order to attend classes.

Friday, the U.S. Justice Department filed an appeal with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta challenging the state's authority regarding immigration policy, WBRC-TV, Birmingham, reported. Various rights groups also signed onto the appeal, the broadcaster said.

The measure was upheld by U.S. District Judge Sharon Lovelace Blackburn last week, but federal officials wrote in a 28-page appeal the state was contravening "the federal government's exclusive authority over immigration," the Huntsville (Ala.) Times said.

"States do not have the authority to disregard these (federal) priorities and create a patchwork of independent immigration policies," the Justice Department court document said.

The three-judge federal appeals court gave Alabama officials a deadline of Tuesday afternoon to prepare a defense of the immigration law.

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