A California judge has blocked US President Donald Trump's executive order that sought to withhold federal funds to "sanctuary cities", the communities that have refused to work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials after detaining illegal immigrants.
The ruling from U.S. District Judge William Orrick III in San Francisco on April 25 said that Trump's order targeted broad categories of federal funding for sanctuary governments and that plaintiffs challenging the order were likely to succeed in proving it unconstitutional, reports the Fox news.
"Federal funding that bears no meaningful relationship to immigration enforcement cannot be threatened merely because a jurisdiction chooses an immigration enforcement strategy of which the president disapproves," the judge said in the ruling.
The decision will block the measure for now, while the federal lawsuit works its way through the courts. The order comes days after the Justice Department threatened to cut off funding to eight so-called "sanctuary cities," unless they were able to provide proof of cooperation with federal authorities over undocumented immigrants.
San Francisco and Santa Clara County argued that the administration warning threatened billions of dollars in funding for each of them, making it difficult to plan budgets.
The Trump administration has argued that sanctuary cities allow dangerous criminals back on the street while sanctuary cities say turning local police into immigration officers erode the trust that's needed to get people to report the crime.
The order also has led to lawsuits by Seattle; two Massachusetts cities, Lawrence and Chelsea; and a third San Francisco Bay Area government, the city of Richmond.
This was yet another stay on a Trump executive order after a federal appeals court blocked the original travel ban that prohibited travelers from several Muslim-majority countries from entering into the U.S. The administration then revised the order, but the new version also is stalled in court.