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.

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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.

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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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