Fate of Haitian refugees at stake in Miami trial

A trial expected to affect the status of thousands of Haitian refugees in the United States opened Monday in US District Court here. Judge James King heard opening arguments on a class-action lawsuit filed by eight Haitians and the Haitian Refugee Center in Miami claiming that the US government has denied due process of law to citizens of the Caribbean country who entered the US without proper documents.

Thousands of undocumented Haitians have reached Florida shores in small boats in the last several years. Judge King last year suspended deportation hearings against them until the current lawsuit could be decided.

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