BALTIMORE (AP) — A federal judge in Maryland has said immigration officers can’t use marriage interviews as a “honeypot” to trap and deport people who are living in the country illegally.

Now that same judge will consider a lawsuit filed by six couples who say federal officers did just that in the Baltimore office of U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services.

The American Civil Liberties Union seeks class-action status for the lawsuit, which says officers “cruelly twisted” regulations by detaining immigrants who have sought legal status based on their marriages to U.S. citizens.

Spokespeople for the federal agencies being sued say they can’t comment on pending litigation. But evidence in a similar case in Massachusetts includes an email from an immigration and customs officer urging more such arrests, saying that in the end, “we are in the removal business.”

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